Men's Basketball Runs Past Widener

COLLEGEVILLE, Pa. – A big run right out of halftime broke open a nip-and-tuck affair and propelled the Ursinus College men's basketball team to an impressive 99-80 victory over Widener in non-conference action Sunday.

Sophomore Ryan McTamney scored a career-high 20 points to lead five players in double figures for the Bears (3-1), who shot 55.6 percent for the game (40 for 72) and went 13 of 24 from 3-point range (54.2 percent) to supplement a 46-29 advantage on the glass against a strong Widener squad that beat the Bears by 15 on this date a year ago.

Junior Eric Williams Jr. scored 15 of his 18 points in the second half – all on five treys – and senior Zach Quattro matched him with 18 of his own. Sophomore Shane Stark put up 13 points and eight rebounds and senior Remi Janicot added a season-high 13 points, making all but one of his six field-goal attempts.

Ursinus led by as many as 13 points in the first half, but the Pride (2-1) got within 47-45 on a fast-break bucket by Tyler Drews just 26 seconds into the second stanza. McTamney, however, found Eric Williams with a skip pass for a 3 on the left wing and slipped a feed inside to Quattro to kick-start a 16-3 burst that had the Bears in front by 15 less than five minutes later.

McTamney sandwiched a 3-pointer and a lay-in off his own steal around a Widener basket to make it 59-48 before junior Zack Muredda dropped a perfect pocket pass to Janicot and scored off his own swipe to force the visitors into a timeout with Ursinus up 63-48.

The lead never dipped below 11 again, and swelled to as large as 24 on a 3-pointer by freshman Bruce Edwards with 1:50 to play. The only drama was whether the Bears would hit triple digits for the second time this year, but they went scoreless from there until the final buzzer.

McTamney finished 8 for 10 from the floor and 4 of 5 from distance in reaching double figures for the fourth straight game to open the season. Quattro (8 for 16), Eric Williams (6 of 11), Stark (6 for 10), and Janicot (5 for 6) were all over 50 percent for Ursinus, which eclipsed that mark as a team for the third time in four contests.

Six Bears grabbed at least four boards, with Quattro grabbing seven and Muredda six. That helped lead to a 54-28 discrepancy in points in the paint.

Rafferty handed out six assists without a turnover, and Janicot and Muredda had four apiece. Rafferty moved into 9th in Centennial Conference history with his final dime of the day, the 363rd of his career.  

Everyone saw time for the Bears, and Edwards made a few jaws drop with a high-flying jam on a breakaway with 2:58 to go.

Drews led Widener with 21 points, while Connor Laverty added 13 and Elijah Boyd 12.

The Bears were ahead by just three (16-13) when McTamney ignited a 10-0 spurt that Quattro capped with a three-point play and lay-up to put the home side up 26-13 at the midway point of the frame. Widener made a move in the final minutes of the period, using a 15-6 run of its own to close within 44-43 after a three-point play by Laverty with 32 ticks showing. McTamney's 3-pointer, on a feed from Eric Williams, stopped the bleeding and sent Ursinus into the break with a 47-43 lead.

The men's basketball team resumes Centennial Conference play against Franklin & Marshall on Thursday, November 30.