NEW LONDON, Conn. – The Mitchell College men's basketball team picked up a 74-60 victory over Anna Maria College on Saturday afternoon in a non-conference clash at the Yarnall Athletic Center.
In what was a tight game throughout, Mitchell held Anna Maria to only two points over the final 6:56 to sew up its fourth straight win. The Mariners, who shot 46 percent for the game, netted 19 of the game's final 21 points.
Domenico Santiago finished with a game-high 23 points on 11-for-17 shooting and added 10 rebounds to lead Mitchell (5-3 overall). Steffen Brunson chipped in 11 points and five assists while Landon Peabody came off the bench to add 11 points and five boards.
Mike Rapoza paced Anna Maria (3-8 overall) with 20 points on 10-for-16 shooting and filled out the stat sheet with 12 rebounds, four blocks, three steals and two assists. Bobby Perette contributed 14 points while Ralph Grasso Jr. added 12.
Four minutes into the contest, a three-pointer by Perette ignited a 7-0 run that gave the AMCATS their biggest lead of the day at 13-6. Rapoza and Grasso also provided buckets during the stretch, forcing Mitchell to take a timeout to regroup.
The Mariners hung around and slowly chipped away at the deficit, getting a spark off the bench from Peabody and Malik Chase. Mitchell eventually pulled in front on a three by Brunson that made it 21-19 with 6:29 to go in the half, and by the halftime buzzer the home team had built the margin to eight at 36-28.
Early in the second half, Anna Maria trailed by seven when Grasso and Perette buried threes on back-to-back possessions to cut the deficit to one. Moments later, Perette fed Rapoza for a lay-up in the post that put the AMCATS on top 43-42 with 14:32 remaining.
A three-pointer by Peabody pushed the Mariners back in front, and Mitchell held the lead until a put-back by Rapoza tied the game at 55-55 with 7:25 to go. A steal by Sidney Limage then resulted in a fast-break layup and free throw by Grasso to put the AMCATS up three.
Mitchell countered with a 12-0 run over a 3:24 span to take over the lead for good. Chase, Santiago and Hasani Williams each contributed a pair of baskets during the spurt, which left the Mariners with a 67-58 lead with 2:13 to play.
Williams finished with eight points and four rebounds to go along with four assists and three steals. Chase ended with eight points and seven boards in 16 minutes off the bench.
Mitchell will next play against Keiser University on Tuesday, December 18 at 7 p.m. on the campus of Johnson & Wales University (FL). Anna Maria returns to action against Vassar College on Saturday, December 29 at 6 p.m. on the campus of Utica College.