ARLINGTON, Va. - The Marymount University men's basketball team kept its streak alive on Saturday afternoon, battling past Immaculata University, 77-60, to move its win streak to four games. They are now 5-4 in Atlantic East Conference play, good enough for the third spot in the standings.
Five different Saints found double digits in scoring, as Marymount shot 46.4 percent from the floor compared to 34.3 percent by the Mighty Macs. Leading the way were junior LaDarius McCord and sophomore Steve Etienne with 19 and 15 points, respectively. They both also led the game in rebounding, as Etienne put together a double-double performance with 13 rebounds, and McCord missed his double-double by one board.
The game saw 14 lead changes and four ties throughout the 40-minute battle, but it was the Saints that caught fire late in the second half to build up the largest lead of the game of 17 with 13 seconds remaining.
Marymount maintained a double-digit advantage through much of the second half, but down the stretch, Immaculata made its way back into the game and within single digits when IU's Mike Piekarski connected on a three-pointer to move the score to 64-56. However, with great transition, a spark came on the next two Saint offensive series that erupted the Converse Family Fieldhouse.
Following Piekarski's three-pointer, the Saints pushed the ball quickly up the court before the Mighty Macs could get back and set. Junior Taiga Walker moved the ball past half court and sent it to the right side of the court to the open hands of freshman Xavier Reaves. Reaves, not needing a dribble, skied up over the block attempt of Immaculata's Andre Allen and slammed down an outstretched one-handed dunk to send the gym into a frenzy.
On the next series in quick transition, the ball was in the offensive end for a two-on-one opportunity with junior Josh Giardina and Etienne. Giardina, pulling the defender his way on the right wing, lobbed a ball up to the rim where Etienne lept up for the two-handed cocked-back alley-oop to seal up the momentum swing for the Saints.
With a 10-point advantage with 3:26 left in the game, the Saints remained composed at the free-throw line and put the finishing touch in their fourth-straight victory.
Reaves contributed 12 points off the bench, while junior Ryan Albert and Walker added 11 and 10 points, in that order.
They will get the week off before traveling to Scranton, Pennsylvania next Saturday, February 9 for another league matchup against Marywood University. Start time is set for 3 p.m.