Second-Ranked Rochester Rides First Half Burst to UAA Win

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CLEVELAND – With four players contributing to a take-charge 14-0 run early in the first half, the University of Rochester rolled to an 88-66 victory over Case Western Reserve University at Horsburgh Gymnasium on Sunday afternoon. 

Nate Vernon, John DiBartolomeo, and Tyler Sankes each scored four points in the burst. Tyler Seidman added a jumper. The run took 4:45 and gave Rochester a 19-3 lead with 12:52 left in the first half. Rochester made 71% of its shots in the first seven minutes and 61% for the entire 20 minutes.

DiBartolomeo scored 31 points, had seven assists, and six rebounds. He hit 13 of 21 from the floor, three of five outside the arc, and both of his free throws. Sankes was a perfect 6-6 from the floor and scored 14 points. Seidman added 10 points, including two three-pointers (both in the first half when Rochester led, 45-25, at the break).

Kevin Sheehy and Kyle Reardon scored seven points apiece. Vernon and Rob Reid finished with six points. Austin Fowler scored 24 points for Case, including 9 of 12 from the foul line. Brian Klements scored 14 points, hitting 7 of 10 from the floor.

 Rochester, ranked second in the current poll, improved to 16-0 overall, 5-0 in the University Athletic Association. Case is 8-8 overall, 1-4 in the UAA.

 The Yellowjackets remain tied for first place with Brandeis University, which won, 67-62, at Washington on Sunday afternoon. Emory is 3-2 in the league. NYU, Washington, and Chicago are all 2-3. NYU (Friday) and Brandeis (Sunday) come to the Palestra next weekend. Rochester travels to both of those schools in two weeks, February 1-3.

A layup by Sankes early in the second half gave Rochester a 53-31 lead. Case answered with a layup from Klements and a three-pointer from the top of the key by Fowler to get it down to 17, 53-36.

 Rochester then went on a 15-2 run  over three minutes with DiBartolomeo scoring 10 of the 15. Seidman added two free throws and Reardon sank a trey from the left of the key. Fowler had the only Case points, making a layup right after two DiBartolomeo free throws (55-38, at 15:16). DiBartolomeo finished the run with a trey from left wing for a 68-38 lead with 12:44 left.