Halftime Lead Vanishes In Men's Basketball Loss At Nyack

Men's basketball player drives to basket.
Jay'von Jackson scored 20 points in Felician's Dec. 4, 2018, loss at Nyack. (Steven R. Smith)

NYACK, N.Y. – Felician University's 14-point halftime lead disappeared in six minutes in its eventual 80-69 Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference men's basketball loss to host Nyack College on Tuesday night at Bowman Gymnasium. The contest tipped off the 2018-19 CACC schedule for both schools.

Freshman Jay'von Jackson (Plainfield, N.J.) scored 20 points in 23 minutes off the Felician bench. The Golden Falcons received 15 points and five assists from freshman Jaylen Colon (Paterson, N.J.). Senior Carl Balthazar (Montreal, Quebec) led five double-figure scorers for Nyack (2-6, 1-0 CACC). Balthazar shot 7 for 8 from the floor, including 4 of 5 from distance, while recording 22 points, 11 rebounds and four blocked shots.

The Golden Falcons (1-5, 0-1) led, 20-9, following a lay-up and free throw from Colon after eight minutes, 15 seconds, had gone by in the game. Later, eight consecutive points on three-point field goals from Debon Bright (Woodland Park, N.J.) and Jeff Lewis (Sicklerville, N.J.) and a Colon bucket gave the visitors their largest bulge of the night, 34-18, with 6:24 left until halftime.

Felician remained ahead by a double-digit margin for the balance of the period. It restored its 16-point edge at the 1:05 mark before settling for a 43-29 advantage at intermission.

The Golden Falcons, however, were held scoreless for the first three minutes of period two. Ten consecutive points out of the locker room by the Warriors, the last eight by Balthazar, made the score 43-39. Colon temporarily stalled the uprising with a lay-up in traffic, but Balthazar answered with his third three of the half.

By the 14:03 mark, Nyack had tied the score, 47-47, on a three from Shawn Witherspoon (Philadelphia, Pa.). Felician continued to misfire, and trifectas from Curtis Thompson (Burlington, N.J.) and Kennith Ford (Forestville, Md.) followed.

In all, the Warriors outscored Felician, 24-4, over the first eight minutes of the second half. Nyack was 8 for 21 from long range for the game, but 6 for 7 during that spurt.

Felician never again closed its deficit to one possession. The Golden Falcons shot 26 percent from the floor and committed 10 turnovers after halftime. The final 11-point margin was Nyack's largest of the night.

Junior Zamir Wright (Newark, N.J.) finished with 11 points for the Golden Falcons. Junior Isiah Hinton-Gray (Brooklyn, N.Y.) (12 rebounds) and freshman Dee-End McRae (Irvington, N.J.) (9) helped build Felician's 48-42 rebounding advantage. Nyack attempted 14 more foul shots than their guests (35-21) but survived only converting at a 57 percent rate.

Felician travels to Mansfield University for non-conference action on Thursday at 7 p.m.