WORCESTER, Mass. - The Worcester State University men's basketball team opened up the new decade by squandering a 21-point deficit to Roger Williams University Thursday afternoon, falling 71-66 in non-conference action at John P. Brissette Court.
With the loss, Worcester State drops to 3-7 overall on the season, while the Hawks improve to 9-3.
Worcester State opened the contest on a 10-0 run and never looked back for the rest of the first half. Seniors Cal Howes (Maynard, Mass.) and Tyler Dion (Barre, Mass.) each had four points on the game's opening run. Entering the locker room, junior Chris Cardoso (Jamaica Plain, Mass.) was the game's leading scorer with 10 points, and Worcester State led 37-18.
A pair of Cardoso free throws less than a minute into the second half ran the Lancer lead to 39-18, the largest Worcester State advantage of the day. On the impending Roger Williams possession, junior Doug Hostetler hit a three-pointer, and the Hawks were off and running.
Roger Williams would score 53 second half points after recording just 18 in the first half to pull off the improbable comeback. Sophomore Eli Harris scored 16 second half points for the Hawks, which included the go-ahead lay-in with 2:20 remaining to give the visitors the lead for good. The bucket was preceded by back-to-back EJ Nelson triples, which tied the score at 61-61 with 3:15 remaining.
Harris finished as the game's leading scorer with 20 points, while Cardoso was Worcester State's leader in both points (19) and rebounds (12) for the double-double. Sophomore Corey Olivier (Maynard, Mass.) scored 16 points off the bench to set a new career high. Howes (14) and Dion (10) also finished in double figures for the Lancers, while Drew Hart (14) and Hostetler (11) accomplished the feat for Roger Williams.
Next up for the Lancers, they will travel to Salve Regina on Saturday for a 1 p.m. tipoff against the Seahawks. Roger Williams is back in action on January 7 with a CCC battle against University of New England.