Manhattanville Wins 12th Annual CUNY Coaches vs. Cancer Classic Title, Smith Named MVP

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BRONX, N.Y. – The Manhattanville College men's basketball team picked up the 100-92 victory Saturday evening, Dec. 29, over Stevenson University on the campus of Lehman College. The win came in the 12th Annual CUNY Coaches vs. Cancer Classic title game and the Valiants came away with the championship crown.
For Manhattanville (6-6), sophomore Sean Smith, Jr. led all players with 28 points and 12 rebounds – including a perfect 10-of-10 from the foul line. His back-to-back 20-plus-point and 10-plus-rebound performances earned him the title of Tournament MVP. He now has nine double-doubles on the season and six in his last seven games.
Joining Smith in propelling the Valiants to victory over the Mustangs (8-3) were junior JoJo Cobbs – 22 points and an All-Tournament Selection – and sophomore Mike Granda – 21 points, including 3-of-4 from long range. Mark Terrell and Montaque Wright both scored 20-plus points in the losing effort for Stevenson.
Manhattanville got out of the gate quickly and started the game on a 9-2 run, capped by three Smith free-throws after the sophomore drew a shooting foul on a three-point-attempt. After the Mustangs closed the gap a bit, the Valiants jumped ahead to a nine-point advantage at 20-11 with 15:40 remaining in the first following a three from Smith. Stevenson tied the game twice as the half went on, but Manhattanville was able to build a six-point lead at 49-43 heading into the break.
The Mustangs scored the first six points of the second half to knot it up at 49-49, but the Valiants went on a 7-0 run over their own to take the 56-49 lead with 17-25 remaining. Manhattanville controlled the remainder of the second, leading by as many as 15 points following a quick 6-0 run helped by a pair of buckets from Cobbs and a jumper from sophomore Cory Madden to put the Valiants up 73-58 with 11:02 left. Manhattanville maintained that double-digit lead for the majority of the next six minutes before the Mustangs began to chip away. Stevenson got as close as four at 92-88 following a pair of free-throws from Terrell with 1:02 remaining.
Manhattanville was able to hold on for the win and has now won two straight following a three-game skid to bring its record back to .500 and close out 2018 at 6-6.
The Valiants return to the court for a non-conference road game in Middletown, Conn., when they have Wesleyan University this Wednesday night, Jan. 2, at 7:30 p.m.