NEW LONDON, Conn. – The Mitchell College men's basketball team cruised to an 86-70 victory over Western Connecticut State University on Tuesday night at the Yarnall Athletic Center.
Mitchell (4-3 overall) led for the majority of the contest en route to the program's first-ever win over Western Connecticut State (0-6 overall). Junior Anthony Epps led four Mariners in double figures with a season-high 30 points on 11-of-15 shooting from the field. Phil Starks paced the Colonials with 20 points and added three assists.
Mitchell fell behind in the early going but tied the game at 11-11 on a three-pointer by junior Joshua Ford with 15:03 remaining in the first half. The Mariners never trailed again and later used an 8-0 run to take a 24-16 advantage with 9:53 to go.
A corner three-pointer from junior Alex Del Rio gave Mitchell its biggest lead of the half at 40-26 with 3:44 to play, but the Colonials whittled the deficit back to 10 before intermission. Starks had 13 points at the break to lead all scorers, but Western Connecticut State shot just 38 percent in the stanza. Epps had 11 points in the half as Mitchell shot 61 percent on the way to a 44-34 lead.
In the second half, Mitchell held a 54-42 advantage with 15:37 to play when Western Connecticut State made a run to cut the margin in half. Ryan Pelletier had five points during the stretch, and a lay-up by Derek McIntyre brought the Colonials to within six with 13:20 remaining.
The Mariners responded by scoring the next seven points, with freshman Devonta Mosley providing a key three-pointer to build the lead back to double digits. Epps then scored seven points—four free throws and a three-pointer—over a 28-second span to bump the margin to 16.
Mitchell led by as many as 19 points and shot 54 percent as a team. The Mariners held a 46-33 edge on the glass to help offset 21 turnovers. Ford finished with 19 points, 13 rebounds and five assists while Mosley and Del Rio added 12 and 11 points, respectively. Del Rio also led all players with eight assists.
Pelletier also scored in double figures for the Colonials with 12 points. Joseph Groski contributed eight rebounds while Tre'Von Perry had a game-high five blocks.
Mitchell opens up conference play at home against Daniel Webster College on Saturday, December 8 at 3 p.m.