Chris Kendrick (@CKendrick86)
BROOKLINE, Mass. – Elms College senior Symon Smith (Oklahoma City, Okla.) become the 10th player in men's basketball program history to amass 1,000 career points as the Blazers fell to host Lesley University, 87-69, in their 2016-17 season finale Saturday evening. The Blazers wrap the campaign with a 4-21 mark, and a 4-12 record in the New England Collegiate Conference (NECC), while the Lynx improve to 9-7 in the NECC, and 15-10 on the season.
Smith opened the contest with back-to-back three-pointers for the Blazers, but the Lynx responded with a 12-2 run, paced by seven points from senior Pierre St. Simon (Farmingdale, N.Y.), to grab a 15-8 lead. The Blazers clawed back behind five points by senior Trifon Bish (St. Catherine, Jamaica) to cut the deficit to 16-15, and then a pair of free throws from Smith pulled Elms even at 22-22 with 9:22 to play. Five straight points from freshman DeAngelo Cousar (Bowie, Md.) handed the Blazers a 27-24 advantage, but the Lynx answered from long range, connecting on a trio of three-pointers to regain a 35-31 lead. Six points from sophomore Xeo Golding (Windermere, Fla.) pushed the Lynx lead to 45-36, but a three-point play from Smith closed the gap to 47-39 at the half.
Lesley came out strong in the second half, using an 8-0 run to expand their gap to 55-39. Smith knocked down two more treys to work down the deficit, 59-47, but seven consecutive points from junior Marquise Johnson (Hampton, Va.) sparked an 8-0 run to develop a 68-47 advantage for the Lynx. Smith netted 16 straight points for the Blazers during a 10-minute span of the second half, but back-to-back three-pointers from Lesley senior Devon Mayo (Newport News, Va.) gave Lynx their largest lead of the contest, 87-65, at the 1:51 mark. Senior Conny Ihearahu (Largo, Md.) and freshman Jared Kyle (Plantation, Fla.) added late buckets for Elms as they fell to the Lynx, 87-69.
Smith netted the second-most points in a game in program history with 40 points, adding seven rebounds and three steals. Ihearahu grabbed a team-high 10 rebounds with eight points, while Cousar and Bish scored seven points apiece.
The Lynx had five scorers in double figures, led by a team-high 19 points, six rebounds and five assists. St. Simon had 17 points, six rebounds and a game-high six assists, while sophomore Joey Martin (Melbourne, Fla.) posted a double-double with 11 points and a game-high 11 rebounds. Golding chipped in 14 points, and Johnson had 12 points, eight rebounds and five assists in the win.
The Lynx controlled the rebounding category, 53-27, during the contest. The Blazers connected on 41.3% (26-of-63) from the floor, including 28% (7-of-25) from three-point range, and 83.3% (10-of-12) from the foul line. Lesley shot 47.3% (35-74) from the field, 33.3% (10-of-30) from three-point range, and 58.3% (7-of-12) from the free throw stripe.
The Blazers have concluded play for the 2016-17 season. Lesley will head to the NECC Championship tournament as the third-seed and will host Regis in the First Round Tuesday night.