GORHAM, Maine – Sophomore Jack Casale (Portland, Maine/Cheverus) scored 22 points to lead three players in double-figures as the Saint Joseph's College (Maine) Monks held on for an 83-79 win over the University of Southern Maine Huskies in a non-conference men's basketball game Sunday night Hill Gym.
With the win, SJC improves to 3-2 overall, earning its second consecutive win. The Monks also retain the Costello Cup for the second straight year and earn their 18th win in the 30-game series. The Costello Cup, which is presented annually to the winner of the contest between the rival schools, honors the late Dr. Richard. "Doc" Costello, former USM Athletic Director and long-time basketball coach. Southern Maine takes its second straight loss to dip to 2-2.
Casale was 8-for-15 from the field with four three-pointers, and notched a double-double with 12 rebounds. Seniors Ian Mileikis (Auburn, Maine/Edward Little) and Darian Berry (Rochester, N.H./Spaulding) each tossed in 17 points. Mileikis added eight rebounds and nine assists to fill the stat sheet.
Senior Christian McCue (Hampden, Maine/Hampden Academy) and junior Jayvon Pitts-Young (Portland, Maine) each scored 20 points for the Huskies. Senior Sean Jany (Westbrook, Maine) added 17 points and six boards. Senior Grayson Waterman (Berwick, Maine/Noble) had seven point and a team-high nine rebounds.
Trailing by as many as 24 points midway through the second half, Southern Maine made a late-game push but was unable to overcome the Monks lead down the stretch. Down 71-55 with 8:42 to play, USM used a 14-3 run over the next six minutes to trail by five, 74-69, with 2:37 on the clock. Junior Derek Haney (Auburn, Calif./Placer) had a pair of threes in the run, while freshman Evan Christensen (Old Orchard Beach, Maine/Thornton Academy) had four.
Facing a two-possession game, the Monks were able to get enough points from the free throw line to secure the win. The Monks were 7-for-8 from the charity stripe in the final minutes of the game, led by a 4-for-4 effort from Mileikis.
Southern Maine returns to action at UMass Dartmouth on Wednesday (7:30 p.m.) in its Little East Conference opener. Saint Joseph's College travels to the University of New England on Wednesday (7:30 p.m.) in a non-conference game.
COURTESY OF USM SPORTS INFORMATION