WORCESTER, Mass. - The Worcester State University men's basketball held on for a nail-biting 79-77 Senior Night win over Fitchburg State University in Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference action at John P. Brissette Court.
With the win, Worcester State improves to 13-11 overall on the season and 9-2 in the MASCAC. The Lancers clinch a bye into the semifinals of next week's MASCAC Tournament with the victory.
Prior to the game, the Worcester State Athletic Department honored the four members of the men's basketball team's Class of 2020. Seniors Tyler Dion (Barre, Mass.), Cal Howes (Maynard, Mass.), Chris Cesar (Lowell, Mass.), and Jason Truax (Northborough, Mass.) were all joined on the court by friends and family for the ceremony.
Fitchburg State came out of the gate looking to rain on Worcester State's Senior Night parade, jumping out to a quick 12-3 lead less than three minutes into the game, but the Lancers would recover in time to take a 41-39 lead into the locker room. Freshman Sam Dion (Barre, Mass.) led all scorers with 13 first half points, while Nicholas Tracy (12), Devon Johnson (10), and Jordan Jones (10) were all in double figures for the guests.
Despite the two-point margin both at the break and at the final horn, the second half featured no ties or lead changes as the Lancers held on for the key league victory. A 7-0 run midway through the half gave the Lancers their largest lead of the evening at nine points with just under 12 minutes to play, but the Falcons refused to go down quietly. Worcester State hit all of its free throws down the stretch, shooting 21-of-26 (81 percent) at the line in the contest, to secure the win.
Tracy was the game's leading scorer with 22 points for Fitchburg State. Chris Cardoso (Jamaica Plain, Mass.) led Worcester State with 21 points to go along with 11 rebounds for a double-double, while Sam Dion (Barre, Mass.) poured in 20 points. Junior Erik Bjorn (Holden, Mass.) recorded a double-double of his own with 12 points and 14 boards.
Worcester State will return to the court on Saturday afternoon for its regular season finale, traveling to Bridgewater State University for a 3 p.m. tip. Fitchburg State will be back in action the same day, hosting Framingham State.