White propels Spartans to quarterfinal win over Hornets

White propels Spartans to quarterfinal win over Hornets

CASTLETON, Vt. – Fourth-seeded Castleton went on a 10-0 run in the second half to record a hard-fought 91-81 victory over fifth-seeded Lyndon in the North Atlantic Conference Quarterfinals at Glenbrook Gymnasium Tuesday.

Castleton got a career-best shooting performance from Logan White, and went nine-for-18 from beyond the arc as the hosts advanced to the NAC Semifinals. The Spartans shot 50.8 percent from the floor for the game and held the Hornets to just 41.9 percent shooting as they end their season with a 12-14 overall record.

White was 8-for-9 from beyond the arc and shot 11-for-13 overall for a career-high 33 points. The eight threes matches a career high set last year and gives him 97 three pointers this season, breaking the old single-season record of 95 set by Scott Keefe back during the 2000-2001 season.

Mark Comstock joined White in double figures with 23 points, seven rebounds and five assists. Chad Copeland chipped in with 12 points and seven rebounds while Dammy Mustapha came off the bench to grab seven boards and score seven points.

Devyn Baranauskas (Waterbury, Conn.) led Lyndon St. with 23 points, five rebounds and four assists. George Carle (Central Falls, R.I.) added 20 points and 12 rebounds while Jose Fortunato (Boston, Mass.) had a solid line of 13 points, seven assists and six rebounds for the Hornets.

Lyndon shot well to start the game, opening with a 12-7 lead in the first 5:25. A layup by Mustapha and a three from White tied it at 12, however seven straight by the Hornets extended their lead to 19-12 with 11:41 left in the half. White ended the run with another three and layups by Chad Pulver and Copeland pulled Castleton even, 19-19 at the 9:30 mark.

The Spartans were unable to take the lead with Lyndon maintaining a slight advantage over the next three minutes. Castleton countered with a 6-0 run, the final bucket coming on a layup by Denny Wilhelm with 1:57 remaining in the half. The Hornets scored back-to-back buckets, before White drilled a triple with just three seconds left in the half to make it 37-35.

The Spartans carried their momentum from the end of the first half into the second. After trading baskets for the first three minutes of the frame, the Spartans went on a 10-0 run, notching all ten points in just a 49-second time span.

With his team trailing 43-40, Comstock drilled two foul shots with 16:12 remaining. -Mustapha forced a steal on the inbounds pass that resulted in a White triple seconds later.

The Hornets inbounded the ball, but were pressured into another turnover as Tyler Ackley earned the steal. He drove to the basket and missed a contested layup, but White was there for the follow, plus the foul. He drained the foul shot to move the score to 48-43. With 15:23 David Brandt stole an errant Hornets pass and converted an easy finger-roll to put the Spartans up 50-43, capping their 10-0 run.

From that point, the Spartans would never trail. Castleton took their largest lead of the game on a pair of Copeland foul shots that put the Spartans up 17 with 7:56 left in the tilt.

Lyndon did its best to keep their season alive, pressuring the Spartans the length of the court in an attempt to force quick turnovers and score transition buckets. The Hornets went on an 13-3 run, cutting the lead to just seven with 5:09 remaining, but would come no closer as Castleton went 9-for-10 from the charity stripe in the final five minutes of play.