Niagara Gazette

Sports

February 14, 2014

Monroe Community sweeps NCCC men, women

Niagara Gazette — SANBORN — The Niagara County Community College men's and women's basketball teams suffered their second sweep of the season Thursday night.

For the second time, the pair of defeats came at the hands of the Monroe Community College Tribunes.

MCC handed the NCCC teams their first sweep Jan. 25 in Rochester and did it again Thursday, taking advantage of some rust on the part of the Thunderwolves to earn a pair of wins.

The NCCC men struggled offensively in a 69-62 loss.

The Thunderwolves (21-4) entered the game ranked No. 7 in this week's National Junior College Athletic Association Division II poll after beating rival Erie Community College on Feb. 4.

The two teams played a physical game with the right to host the NJCAA Region III tournament on the line. NCCC coach Bill Beilein said his players could've handled the physicality better.

"We had a hard time handling some adversity today," Beilein said. "There was a lot of contact in today's game and I don't think we handled a lot of that contact well. There's enjoying the battle of being in a tight game, but we got a little emotional and that can't happen."

The Tribunes held a small lead for the majority of the game before the Thunderwolves tied the game when Eli Jones completed an and-one with two minutes left. 

NCCC was held scoreless from there.

"We kept making stops, we just couldn't sustain it in that last minute," Beilein said.

Jones finished with 17 points and 10 rebounds. Sheldon Zablotny added 16 points, three rebounds and two assists, while Gjaimier Stanford had 15 points, three boards and two helpers.

Monroe (20-5), ranked No. 13 in the D-2 poll, extended its winning streak to 13 games and clinched first place in Region III. With that comes the right to host the regional tournament. NCCC is in second.

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