BIDDEFORD, Maine -- The University of New England gained control with a 12-0 run in the closing period and held on down the stretch for a 76-69 Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) men's basketball victory over Curry College on Thursday evening (Jan. 7) at the Harold Alfond Forum.
Big Blue (7-4, 2-2 CCC) was led by 20 points and seven assists from Drew Coveney, with Gavin Dibble tossing in 15 points off the bench. Jean-Luc Parker connected for 11 1st-half points en route to 14, and CJ Autry added 11 following the break to finish with 13 points. Drew Patno hauled in a game-best nine rebounds.
The Colonels (0-12, 0-5 CCC) received 28 points out of Trey Jones, who nailed four three-pointers and went 10-of-11 at the line. James Pina chipped in with 14 points, and Tim Flanagan had 12 points to go with five assists. Rael Handy posted 11 points and shared the team-high of eight rebounds with Alex Paul.
Curry was up for much of the opening frame, and sat on a 38-34 cushion at intermission while shooting 48 percent (12 of 25) from the field.
Jones made a pair at the charity stripe to put the visitors up (48-46) early in the 2nd half, but after empty possessions both ways, Coveney canned a trey to swing the Nor'easters in front for good with 14:25 left. The basket sparked UNE into nine more unanswered points over the next four minutes as the hosts established a 58-48 advantage.
The Colonels responded with a span of 17-8, featuring eight points from Flanagan and seven by Jones, to cut the gap to one (66-65), but Coveney found Parker in the right corner for a triple moments later to bump the spread up to 69-65 and restore some breathing room.
Big Blue made 5-of-7 free throws in the final 84 seconds to clinch the win.
Curry suffered from 29.6 percent (8 of 27) shooting from the field following halftime.
UNE takes to the road on Saturday (3 p.m.) for a date with Salve Regina University. Curry travels to Gordon College on Saturday also for a 3 p.m. start. (Game recap courtesy of University of New England Sports Information)