Pride Rally Falls Short in Season Opener

Pride Rally Falls Short in Season Opener

BIDDEFORD, Maine – Falling behind early in its first game of the 2019-20 season, Regis College used a full-court press to nearly pull off the comeback, but the University of New England held on for an 89-82 victory Saturday evening in the first game of the Jim Beaudry Classic at the Harold Alfond Forum.

Four players reached double figures in scoring for the Pride, led by Devante Thompson (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) with 16 points on 7-of-13 shooting from the field. Marc Trinidad (Bronx, N.Y.) notched a double-double with 12 points and 14 rebounds, while freshmen Cam Wilkins (Taunton, Mass.) and Justin Evelyn (Uniondale, N.Y.) scored 11 points apiece in their collegiate debut.

Siddiq Canty hit a three-pointer within the first minute of the game as UNE opened an 11-1 advantage in the first six minutes of the contest. Wilkins converted a traditional three-point play to start a 10-2 scoring stretch for the Pride, capped by a three-pointer from Jalen Watson (Woonsocket, R.I.) to close the Pride deficit to 13-11.

Another Canty three-pointer started a 10-0 scoring run for the Nor'easters, but the Pride quickly cut the UNE lead in half thanks to six unanswered points. Ray Evans hit two three-pointers to help the home team increase its lead back to 11 at 33-22, and then the Nor'easters seemingly answered every Regis basket with one of their own, taking a 47-34 lead into the locker room at halftime.

A traditional three-point play by Jackson McCoy two minutes into the second half extended the UNE advantage to 54-36, but the Pride started cutting into that lead, first going on a 9-1 scoring run to close to within 10 at 55-45. McCoy capped a 10-1 Nor'easter run with a layup, but Regis did not give up, scoring the next five points on a layup by Evelyn and a three-pointer from Thompson.

Down 70-53 midway through the second half after a three-pointer by Alex Kravchuk, the Pride rattled off a 14-2 scoring run over a three-minute span to close to within five at 72-67. Regis came within three at 76-73 on a layup by Jalil Wilkerson (New Haven, Conn.), but the Pride would not get any closer, as the Nor'easters were able to close out the game.

McCoy led the Nor'easters with 20 points, while Kravchuk scored 15 points and Canty and Evans collected 13 points apiece. Avery DeBrito contributed six points, nine rebounds, eight assists, and three steals, and Drake Gavin added seven points and seven rebounds.

The Pride shot 47.8 percent (32-of-67) from the field, including 5-of-15 from behind the three-point line, but only 39.4 percent (13-of-33) from the free throw line. Meanwhile, UNE shot 46.7 percent (28-of-60) from the field, including 9-of-23 from behind the three-point line, and 66.7 percent (24-of-36) from the free throw line. Regis did score 24 points off 18 Nor'easter turnovers.

Regis (0-1) will play in the consolation game of the UNE Jim Beaudry Classic, facing Mitchell Sunday, Nov. 17, at 1 p.m. The Mariners lost to NYU Saturday night, 81-73.