By Todd Hummel
For The Daily Item
BLOOMSBURG — It took about two minutes of Saturday's Bloomsburg University men's basketball home opener for the Huskies offense to get on track.
But once they did, Bloomsburg ran Division III Briarcliff right out of Nelson Field House.
Six Huskies' players scored in double figures as Bloomsburg rolled to an 86-66 victory over the Seahawks.
"In the beginning of the game, our pressure got us going," Bloomsburg coach John Sanow said. "It really helped set the tone for the game."
The game was scoreless for the first 2:20 before Briarcliffe got on the board, with Bloomsburg following 15 seconds later. The Huskies pushed the lead up to 11 points with 14:40 left in the first half on a 3-pointer by Niko Traykov.
After using their defensive pressure to jump-start the offense, the Huskies were just as effective in the half-court. Bloomsburg shot 54.8 percent from the floor for the game on 17-of-31 performances in each half.
"We've been really working hard on our half-court offense," Sanow said. "For us to be the team we want to be, we have to score in the half-court. I thought there were stretches where our half-court offense was really effective."
The Huskies led by as many as 22 in the first half, when Jason Green hit a 3-pointer with 6:12 left to make the score 39-17.
The Seahawks rallied to cut the lead to 45-34 when Marcel Seamore drained a 3-pointer 1:17 into the second half, but Traykov answered with a 3-pointer of his own to spark an 11-2 run to push the lead back to 20. The Seahawks didn't get closer than 15 points the rest of the game.
Adon El led the Huskies with 19 points, while Traykov and Jones each added 13 points. Green finished with four 3-pointers and 12 points off the bench. Buddy Rose finished with 11 points and John Allen added 10. Drew Jerry had seven assists, while Jones had seven steals and five assists.
Briarcliffe, while currently a Division III school, is a provisional Division II member from Bethpage, N.Y. The Seahawks started five freshmen, the first recruiting class in its short history. The previous five years, Briarcliffe used student tryouts to field a basketball team.
Josh Smith scored 21 points to lead the Seahawks, while
Daniel Napalitano added 16 points.
• Bloomsburg 71,
BLOOMSBURG — Chantel Hardy scored a career-high 23 points and Lauren Healy chipped in with 15 off the bench as the Huskies rolled to a nonleague win over the Seahawks.
Bloomsburg (2-2) opened up a 26-8 lead in the first half behind Hardy and Healy, who had 12 combined points in the opening 20 minutes.
The Huskies got a bit lackadaisical at that point and allowed Briarcliffe to rally within eight points at 38-30 on an Elisha Raiford foul shot with 16:49 left in the game. Bloomsburg answered with an 11-2 run to push the lead back to 51-34 on two foul shots by Healy with 13:23 left in the game.
The Seahawks never got the deficit back under double digits. Tabrese Harris led the Seahawks with 20 points. Helena Sargeant chipped in with 12. Elisha Raiford and Leona Virgo each had 11 points for Briarcliffe.