The St. Thomas Aquinas College men's basketball team won it's fourth straight, topping Post University, 77-70 in the first game of the Dominican College Tournament in Orangeburg. The Spartans, ranked #5 in this weeks D2SIDA East Regional poll, improved to 4-0 on the season with Post slipping to 1-2.
After scoring over 100 points in each of its first two games, Post found a different challenge against STAC, going nearly five minutes before getting on the scoreboard. Louis Griffith's three-pointer with 15:25 to play in the first half capped a game-opening 9-0 run for the Spartans, though the Eagles did start to chip at the deficit. Post tied the score at 17-17 on a pair of Tyshon Rogers free throws with 8:29 left, but Grant Singleton's trey touched off an 9-1 run to put STAC back on top at 26-18.
Rogers hit again from deep as part of a game-tying 8-0 run, but the Eagles did not take their first lead until Darryl Stewart converted from downtown with three seconds left to give his squad a 34-33 advantage after 20 minutes.
STAC's early 12-2 run opened a 47-39 lead with 15:11 remaining in regulation, and that gap expanded to 59-47 with just over nine minutes left. The margin remained in double figures at 67-57 with a little over four minutes to go, but the Eagles' dormant offense suddenly caught fire in a 9-2 run with DJ Frechette hitting from three to narrow the margin to 69-66 with 2:54 still on the clock.
Osbel Caraballo sank a pair of free throws with 1:52 left, and Demetre Roberts followed with a lay-up, giving St. Thomas Aquinas some breathing room that they would maintain until the final buzzer. Cisse recorded a game-high 16 points as one of four STAC players in double-figures, joined by Kevin Lynch (13), Roberts (11), and Singleton (10). Frechette set the pace for the Eagles by scoring 15.
The Spartans wrap up their weekend at the nearby Dominican Tournament by playing the hosts on Sunday, November 18, in a 5:00 pm tip. After opening the season with five games in nine days, they will then be off until November 28, hosting Bloomfield College in a battle of regional powers with game time set for 7:00 pm at Aquinas Hall.