Nazareth holds off Alfred, 94-92

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. -- Brendan Wind scored a season-high 25 points and passed for nine assists and Jake Burgio and Stephen Gabel each scored 18 as Nazareth outlasted visiting Alfred, 94-92, in an exciting Empire 8 Conference men's basketball game at the Kidera Gymnasium.

The Golden Flyers won for the sixth straight time to improve to 10-3 overall and 5-0 in conference play. Coupled with St. John Fisher's victory at Elmira, the Golden Flyers remain tied for first place in the E8 standings. Alfred lost for the first time in conference play and dropped to 10-3 overall and 3-1 in E8 games. The Golden Flyers visit Fisher Tuesday in an E8 showdown at 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday's game was close throughout with 17 ties and neither team carrying more than a six-point lead. Wind's 25 points included three three-point baskets. He went 8-for-13 from the field and 6-for-7 from the free throw line. Burgio scored all of his points in the second half and came up big down the stretch with nin eof his points in the final 2:20. His stat line also included nine rebounds, while Gabel's included a pair of three-pointers and a 4-for-4 performance at the free-throw line. 

The score was tied for the 17th and final time with 2:20 to go after Burgio scored. He hit a three-pointer on Nazareth's next possession and then hit another short jumper with :39 left to keep Nazareth ahead by three, 88-85. After an Alfred miss, Wind sank two free throws with :23 left. Burgio sank two more with :14 left and Wind again downed two more with :08 to go to preserve the victory.

Both teams posted great shooting percentages. Alfred made 40-of-68 shots (58.8%) with five three-pointers, while Nazareth shot 60% by making 33-of-55 shots, including 9-of-18 from three-point range. Three Alfred players surpassed 20 points with Sage Brown scoring 25, Brewster Marshall 23 and Dom LeMorta 21.

Marshall scored 14 of his points for the Saxons in the first half to offset 11 by Wind, but Nazareth led by one point at 44-43.

It was LeMorta who scored for the Saxons with 1:04 to go to keep Alfred within one point at 86-85. He missed a short jumper, though, on the Saxons' next possession and that started the Golden Flyers' parade to the free-throw line.

Tyler Stenglein added eight points and four assists for the Golden Flyers and Chris Jones had seven points and nine rebounds.

The Golden Flyers take a break from conference play this weekend, but visit Alfred State Friday for a non-conference match-up at 7 p.m.