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Seahawks Claw Back For 64-58 Road Win Over American

Washington, DC – Trailing by seven points at the halfway mark, the Wagner College men's basketball team rallied for a hard-fought 64-58 victory over American on Friday night in our nation's capital.

he Seahawks were paced by redshirt-senior guard Romone Saunders, who tossed in a team-high 17 points to go along with seven rebounds and three assists. Sophomore guard Chase Freeman made an important 12-point contribution in his return from injury, and redshirt-senior forward AJ Sumbryadded 10 points and seven rebounds. On the glass, Wagner was led by sophomore forward Nigel Jackson's eight boards. Entering the second half facing a 27-20 deficit, the Seahawks took their first lead since the opening minutes of the contest on a Jackson three-pointer that made it 54-52 with three minutes to play. After American's Sam Iorio tied the game at 54-54, Freeman scored six of Wagner's eight points, two coming on an athletic layup in the lane to move the lead to 56-54. Freeman and senior guard Elijah Davis stayed calm at the free throw line to close out the game, going 8-8 from the charity stripe in the final pressure-packed minute of the contest to give Wagner a 64-58 win. Freeman and Davis' clutch, game-sealing free throws highlighted a night when the Seahawks were 19-of-22 from the line, a sizzling 86.4 percent. In outscoring American 44-31 in the second half, Wagner was 13-of-24 (54.2 percent) from the floor to finish the game at 40.8 percent shooting. On the other end, the Seahawks' trademark defense limited the Eagles to 42.1 percent second-half shooting and 42.5 percent accuracy overall. Freeman and Davis combined for 20 of Wagner's 30 bench points, with junior forward Chance Anderson providing five points in relief of Sumbry, who was battling foul trouble early on. American was led by Sa'eed Nelson's game-high 22 points, while Iorio was the second Eagle in double figures with 10 on the night. Wagner returns to action next weekend, as the Seahawks welcome Division III New Rochelle next Sunday, December 9, to the Spiro Sports Center, with tip-off set for 2:00 pm. NOTES With his 17 points tonight, Saunders' march to 1,000 career points continues as the Maryland native is now up to 959, just 41 away from becoming the 44th player in Seahawk history to reach this plateau. With the win, which comes on the heels of last season's 71-70 victory on Staten Island, Wagner has now won the last four meetings with the Eagles and takes a 9-6 lead in the all-time series which began in the 1953-54 season.

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