NEW BRITAIN-After the first four minutes of play on Saturday afternoon, the CCSU menâ€™s basketball team was riding high. Storming out to a 14-0 lead at home against Sacred Heart, the Blue Devils were brimming with confidence, only to see it evaporate by the end of the first half.
The Pioneers closed the opening half on a 20-7 run to complete an improbable comeback and take the lead into the break, as a shocked CCSU squad watched a commanding lead turn into an 80-66 loss, the teamâ€™s fourth in a row.
The loss drops the Blue Devils to 11-18 on the season and 5-11 in NEC play.
Junior Jamir Coleman led CCSU with a game-high 22 points, including a 3-pointer to open the game and spark the immediate scoring run for the Blue Devils, as they took a 14-point lead just 3:40 into the game. Sacred Heart snatched momentum from CCSU with a 7-0 run of its own, capped off by a 3-pointer from Zach Radz. After the Blue Devils pushed the lead back into double digits, the Pioneers stormed off on another run to cut the lead to four, before eventually taking the lead for good on a 3-pointer from Kinnon LaRose late in the first half.
LaRose would close the first half with another three to put Sacred Heart up by eight and end a grueling first half for the Blue Devils, one that began with incredible promise.
CCSU tried to begin the second half as it did the first, as Ian Krishnan opened the scoring with a 3-pointer followed by a bucket from Coleman, but this run would be much shorter than the first. The Pioneers broke the mini 5-0 run with an 11-2 run of their own to widen their lead to 11.
The Blue Devils would battle back with the help of Coleman, cutting the lead back down to four with 10 minutes left in the game, but once again, Sacred Heart had a response.
CCSU would never get closer than four points after that run, as a 3-pointer from Sean Hoehn put the Pioneers back up by double digits, which they maintained the rest of the way.
Hoehn and LaRose each knocked down three triples for Sacred Heart, as the team shot 40 percent from deep. The Blue Devils shot with a higher efficiency from downtown at 42 percent, but finished just 36 percent from the floor overall.