Courtesy of Nazathletics.com
PITTSFORD, N.Y. – Senior Jake Burgio (Brockport) scored a game-high 24 points and grabbed eight rebounds Thursday to lift Nazareth to a 77-67 men’s basketball victory over RIT in the first game of the third annual Mark’s Pizzeria Crosstown Shootout at St. John Fisher’s Varsity Gymnasium.
Freshman Zach Stenglein (Irondequoit) and sophomore Isaac Nelson (Brighton) each came off the bench to post career highs with 13 and 12 points respectively as Nazareth pulled away in the second half for a hard-fought non-conference win. The Golden Flyers improved to 4-1 overall, while RIT dropped to 2-5.
Nazareth led 36-35 at the break with Burgio scoring 12, including Nazareth’s first eight points of the game. A 21-9 scoring run that included five points from Nelson and two baskets from Kevin Underwood helped Nazareth turn a six-points deficit in to a six-points lead at 33-27 with 3:15 to go in the half. The evenly played first 20 minutes saw Nazareth shoot 15-for-29 (51.7%) from the floor compared to RIT’s 16-for-31 (51.6%).
A three-pointer by RIT’s Will Atkinson enabled the Tigers to regain the lead at 41-38 early in the second half. Moments later Macrell Davis converted a three-point play to push the Tigers’ lead back to six at 46-40. Two baskets by Nelson helped trigger a 15-3 scoring run that put the Golden Flyers in front for good. Stephen Gabel (Fairport) hit a three-pointer to stretch the lead to 55-49 with less than 10 minutes left. A three-pointer by Tyler Stenglein (Irondequoit) and a steal and a layup for Zach Stenglein extended the lead to nine at 60-51. Nelson buried another three-pointer with 6:17 left to extend Nazareth’s lead to 10 points 63-53.
The Golden Flyers struggled at the free-throw line down the stretch, but still managed to stay ahead by finishing with a 50 percent shooting percentage for the game at 29-for-58. Tyler Stenglein scored only seven points, but still passed for four assists and had five steals. Jaymee Rosser was RIT’s high scorer with 13 points. Atkinson added 12.
Nazareth plays again Saturday against the Rochester in the second game of the tournament sy Fisher at 6 p.m.