EWING, N.J. (NJCUGothicKnights.com) | New Jersey City University shot 50 percent in the first half and was even better in the second half when the Gothic Knights outscored The College of New Jersey, 45-27, leading to an NJCU blowout of the Lions, 82-57, in a key New Jersey Athletic Conference matchup on December 15 at Packer Hall.
NJCU (8-3, 4-2 NJAC) closed out the fall semester by matching its most lopsided result of the season, prevailing by 25 over the rival Lions (5-4, 4-2 NJAC).
Four players scored in double figures for NJCU, led by preseason First-Team All-American Sam Toney (Plainfield, NJ/Williamstown) with 20 points (6-14 FG, 4-6 3FG) and eight rebounds and senior point guard Shaquan Worthy (Trenton, NJ/Trenton Central), who had 11 points—knocking down 3-of-4 three-pointers—while dishing eight assists.
Senior shooting guard Lavrone Green (Teaneck, NJ/Teaneck) added 13 points on 5-of-10 shooting (2-3 3FG) in 19 minutes and senior point guard James Richardson (Jersey City, NJ/Snyder) shot 7-of-10 off the bench to pour in 16 points in 25 minutes.
In a huge defensive effort, NJCU shut down the league's leading scorer and current NJAC Player of the Week, junior guard Randy Walko (Somerville, N.J.). He entered the day 25th in Division III at 22.6 points per game before the Knights limited him to just five points in 27 minutes of action where he shot just 2-of-14 from the field (1-6 3FG).
NJCU trailed 22-16 with 10:56 left in the first half before a 19-4 outburst flipped the script and the guests seized a 35-26 advantage with 2:21 left in the half. With the Knights up by three late in the half, Toney buried threes on back-to-back possessions and Richardson nailed a jumper. NJCU took a 37-30 edge into the locker room, shooting 15-of-30 from the field and 5-of-9 (55.6 percent) from three range. TCNJ was held to 11-of-29 in the half.
NJCU kept its foot on the accelerator coming out of the break, scoring the first nine points of the second half. Threes by Toney and Worthy punctuated the outburst that saw the margin swell to 16 (46-30) in the opening three minutes of the period and TCNJ never challenged again. The NJCU lead hit 20 with 10:40 to go and was as high as 25 points at three junctures, including the final margin.
Sophomore guard P.J. Ringel (Marlboro, N.J.) led the Lions with 15 points but scored just one point in the second half. He was the only Lion to score in double figures.
NJCU shot 54.8 percent in the second half (17-31) and held the host Lions to 10-of-30 shooting (.333) and 3-of-13 from three-point distance in the period.
- Series: 144th known meeting during the NJAC era (since 1955-56). NJCU leads all-time, 78-46.
- Toney surpassed two NJCU Hall of Famers to move into 23rd place in school history with 1,082 points. He moved past George Thomas (1999-2003, 1,069 points) and Dwayne West (1982-86, 1,075 points), older brother of former NBA All-Star David West, on the all-time list.
- Sam Toney (Plainfield, NJ/Williamstown) scored at least 20 points in a game for the 22nd time in his career, the 19th time in his last 38 games, the third time in four games and the fifth time this season.
- Toney scored in double figures for the 51st time in 67 career games.
- James Richardson (Jersey City, NJ/Snyder) scored in double figures for the fifth time in the last six games—the five times he's done it as a Gothic Knight.
- Lavrone Green (Teaneck, NJ/Teaneck) scored in double figures for the 27th time in 38 games as a Gothic Knight and the sixth time this season.
- Shaquan Worthy (Trenton, NJ/Trenton Central) scored in double figures for the eighth time in his career and third time this season.
- Shaquan Worthy (Trenton, NJ/Trenton Central) had five or more assists in a game for the 15th time in his career and dished eight or more assists for the seventh time. He has 219 career assists.
- NJCU is idle for two weeks over the holidays before heading to Wooster, Ohio for one of the better tournaments of the holiday season. NJCU will play in the 56th annual E.M. "Mose" Hole/Wooster Kiwanis Classic, hosted by Wooster College. On Saturday, December 29, the Knights face Thiel College at 5 p.m. The next day, NJCU meets No. 16 ranked Wooster in a matchup of two of the nation's best teams.
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