SALISBURY, Md. – The Salisbury University men's basketball program took on the Saints of Marymount (Va.) University on Wednesday night in a Capital Athletic Conference showdown. The Sea Gulls defeated the visiting Saints, 65-58, behind Chad Barcikowski's 14 points and five rebounds.
Blair Davis got the Sea Gulls (4-2, 2-1 CAC) off to a fast start netting the first points of the game for either team. With the shot clock winding down Davis drove from left to right across the lane and hit a high layup off the glass for the game's opening points and 2-0 lead.
The opening stages of the game settled into a back-and-forth defensive battle with neither team able to establish any offensive dominance early. The Saints (3-4, 3-1 CAC) took the lead off an 8-2 run with just over 14 minutes left to play in the opening half.
Barcikowski broke the scoring run for Marymount as he embarked on a 4-0 run of his own netting back-to-back baskets less than 20 seconds apart. He first hit a jumper to pull the maroon and gold within two before turning defense into offense with the help of Davis. Davis forced a turnover at midcourt and Barcikowski ran the floor perfectly cutting to the basket to finish off the play with an uncontested layup.
The Sea Gulls retook the lead with just over 10 minutes left to play in the first half when J.P. Krotulis netted his first two baskets of the contest. Krotulis finished off a pass from Lucas Martin for his first points and then grabbed an offensive rebound to tally his second basket and push the lead to 14-10.
The Saints retook the lead with a little over six minutes left to play before halftime off a Brandon Rogers three-pointer, 16-14. Martin responded on the very next offensive possession for the Gulls knocking down a jumper for his first points of the contest.
Johnny Fierstein broke a near seven-minute scoring drought for the maroon and gold hitting a game-tying layup with just under two minutes left to play in the opening half to level the score at 18-18. Fierstein took a pass from Martin and finished strong at the rim for his first basket of the contest.
The tie did not last long however, as Marymount responded with a basket of its own just seconds later to retake the lead. Fierstein answered right back though knocking down a long-range three-pointer to give the maroon and gold the lead. Gary Briddell pushed the lead to four moments later forcing a turnover and finishing strong at the rim, drawing contact to get the and-one opportunity, which he converted.
Salisbury took a 24-20 lead into the break netting six points over the final minute of play. Marymount held a slight advantage in rebounds at the half pulling down 15 to Salisbury's 10 while the maroon and gold forced 13 Saints turnovers and only turning the ball over seven times itself.
Johnson Ogunyoye got the maroon and gold off to a quick start in the second half netting his first points of the contest just 16 seconds into the action. Ogunyoye got the ball down low and went to work with a spin in the lane before floating the ball over the defender's hand to push the lead to six.
Barcikowski pushed the Salisbury advantage to its largest of the competition at that point, at nine pulling down a missed free-throw and going right back up with it to make it a 32-23 game. Barcikowski's basket capped an 8-3 run by the maroon and gold to open second half action.
Braedon Dorsey began to find his offensive rhythm stringing together back-to-back baskets to build the Sea Gulls' advantage to 11, which was either team's first double-digit lead of the contest. Dorsey netted two straight layups off assists from Krotulis and then from Davis, who had tallied his second and team's sixth steal of the night moments before.
Dorsey continued to add on to his stat line knocking down his first three-pointer of the game. Off a pass from Fierstein, Dorsey stepped in from just beyond the top of the arc hitting nothing but the bottom of the net. Al Leder joined in on the three-point barrage hitting his first of the contest on the next offensive possession to push the score to 44-28 in favor of the home team.
After a 7-0 scoring run by the Saints cut the Salisbury lead to nine, Barcikowski sent it right back to double-digits hitting his first three-pointer of the night to make it 47-35 with under 10 minutes to play in the game.
Marymount managed to cut the deficit to just five with three and a half minutes remaining in the game behind a 9-0 run, which featured seven points from Dimitri Rucker. However, Chase Kumor answered the run netting the Gulls' first points in over four minutes of action to push the lead to 55-50. Kumor got the ball in the paint and fought off contact at the rim to tally the basket and earn the three-point opportunity.
Dorsey continued to extend the Salisbury lead, pushing it to six, netting his second three-pointer of the contest on the next offensive possession.
With just over a minute to play the Saints pulled within four behind a three-pointer from Josh Giardina. However, Dorsey helped the maroon and gold close out the game knocking down two free throws with under 30 seconds left to play.
Barcikowski finished the night with a team-high 14 points, five rebounds, and three steals. Davis and Dorsey were the only other Gulls to tally double-digit scoring nights netting 11 and 12, respectively. As a team Salisbury shot 26-of-57 (45.6 percent) while going 6-of-10 from behind the three-point arc. Defensively Salisbury forced 22 Saints turnovers and totaled 12 steals while holding Marymount to a shooting percentage of 44.9.
Salisbury will travel to the University of Mary Washington on Saturday, December 9 for its final CAC contest of 2017. The game is slated to tip-off at 3 p.m.