OWINGS MILLS, MD – The York College men's basketball team opened their 2015-16 season with an impressive 59-46 win at Stevenson University on Friday night in the season lid lifter for both squads.
The Spartans earn their second season-opening win in the last three years and it was a quality win as the Mustangs have won a combined 42 games in the last two seasons.
The Spartans got off to a great start as sophomore Matt Scamuffo (Chalfont, Pa./Central Bucks South) drilled a triple in the Spartans' first possession of the game. Scamuffo would drain a second three two minutes later as York led 6-0 early. The Mustangs would not get on the board until after the the first media timeout as the Green and White held their hosts off the board until the 14:59 mark. Sean Mayberry hit a jumper to break the Mustang drought.
The Spartans pushed their lead to 13-6 on a Dalton Myers (Finksburg, Md./Westminster) lay up midway through the first half. The Mustangs climbed back into the game courtesy of a 7-0 spurt, tying the game at 13. Back-to-back buckets from sophomore Zack Galic (Camp Hill, Pa./Cedar Cliff) put the Spartans up 17-13 but the Mustangs scored the next six points to take their first lead of the game at 19-17.
The Mustangs held a 21-19 lead when the Spartans put together a 6-0 run to take a 25-21 with 1:07 left in the half. The teams traded a pair of free throws over the final 51 seconds of the half as York took a 27-23 lead at the break.
The fact the Spartans had a halftime lead was impressive considering the Green and White committed 14 turnovers. Stevenson also had seven offensive rebounds and attempted 12 more shots than York in the opening 20 minutes of the game.
The Spartans cleaned up their play in the second half and that proved to be a huge key to the win.
Stevenson's Erik Fisher hit a bucket to open the half but York scored the next six points to sprint out to a 33-25 lead in the first 3:29 of the half. The Mustangs shaved the Spartan lead to one on a pair of Mayberry free throws with 13:38 left in the game.
The Spartan lead would vacillate between one and six points over the next eight minutes of the game. York's lead stood at 46-43 when Mayberry had a chance for a three-point play. He missed the free throw and York scored the next five points to push out to a 51-43 lead with 2:51 left in the game.
A Christian Roberts lay up cut the York to 51-45 but York would convert eight straight free throws over the final 1:49 to salt the game away. York outscored the Mustangs 13-4 over the final five minutes of the game.
Myers and Scamuffo proved to be a very effective one-two offensive punch for the Green and White. Myers led the Spartans with a game-high 18 points as he was 6-for-11 from the floor including 1-for-2 from three and 4-for-7 from the stripe. Myers pulled in seven rebounds, blocked two shots and had a pair of steals in his 35 minutes of work. Scamuffo had 17 points as he was 6-for-11 from the floor including 2-for-5 from three and 4-for-4 from the stripe in the final two minutes of the game. Scamuffo added four rebounds and three assists.
Senior captain Chris Conway (Luthersville, Md./Dulaney) played a very strong overall game as he pulled in a career-high eight rebounds to go along with six points. Galic pulled in a career-high eight caroms while he also had four points and a blocked shot in his collegiate debut.
Fisher paced the Mustangs as he notched a double-double with 17 points and a game-high 10 rebounds. Fisher was 6-for-18 from the floor including 0-for-5 from three. He sank 5-for-7 attempts from the free throw line. Mayberry added 14 points and pulled in seven rebounds. Mayberry was 6-for-13 from the floor and 2-for-5 from the free throw line. Roberts chipped in eight points but was just 3-for-12 from the floor including 1-for-6 from three and 1-for-2 from the line. The Mustangs had just three players score more than two points in the loss.
York finished the game shooting 45.6% from the floor while they were 4-for-13 from three. York missed all four of their second half three pointers but the Spartans did a good job of getting into the lane and knocking down mid-range shots. The Spartans were very good from the free throw line as they hit 15-of-20 (75%) from the stripe including 10-for-13 in the second half.
The Spartans harassed the Mustangs into 29% shooting for the evening. Stevenson attempted 19 more shots than York but had two fewer made field goals. The Mustangs went just 1-for-18 from three as they were 0-for-8 in the first half and 1-for-10 in the second half. Stevenson didn't help themselves from the line as they went 10-for-18 in the game including a paltry 3-for-9 (33.3%) in the second half.
The Spartans did a great job on the glass as they outrebounded their hosts 43-35. York outscored Stevenson 32-24 in the paint while the Mustangs held an 11-4 advantage in second chance points.
The Spartans return to action on Monday night when they open up their home slate when they welcome Gettysburg College to Wolf Gymnasium for their annual non-conference contest. Tip time in York is set for 7:00 pm.