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Hornets stun NEC; advance to NAC semifinals

Hornets stun NEC; advance to NAC semifinals

HENNIKER, N.H. – David Johnson (Washington, D.C.) tossed in 30 points to lead sixth-seeded Lyndon to a 63-59 upset victory over No. 3 New England College in the quarterfinal round of the North Atlantic Conference men's basketball playoffs.

With the win, the Hornets advance to the NAC semifinals where they will face second-seeded Husson University at Colby-Sawyer College in New London, N.H. Friday at 8 p.m.

Lyndon split its two contests with the Eagles this season, handing them their first conference loss of the season (101-85) on Saturday, Jan. 24 before dropping a tough 69-66 decision at Stannard Gymnasium on Friday, Feb. 13.

Tuesday's matchup was a see-saw battle throughout. Tied at 33-33 at intermission, the Hornets knotted the score once again at 55-55 on a Johnson three and took the lead for good less than 30 seconds later on a layup by Rob Alers (Central Falls, R.I.).

The Lyndon defense kept New England at bay down the stretch, allowing a mere four points in the final five minutes of the contest. A pair of George Carle (Central Falls, R.I.) free throws with 1:34 left extended the Hornets lead to three and a pair of free throws by Johnson and Eric Vargas (Lowell, Mass.) in the final minute of play sealed the victory.

Johnson had four assists to go with his 30-point effort while Avery King (Pawtucket, R.I.) and Alers added nine points and seven rebounds, respectively.

Jonathan Byrnes had 14 points for the Pilgrims while teammate Joel DeMadet chipped in 13 points and 11 rebounds. C.J. Capilets had 11 points in the loss and Dondre James handed out a game-high seven assists.

By BILL JOHNSON, Assistant Athletic Director/SID