After losing to Northampton Community College early in the season, the Montgomery County Community College Mustangs men's basketball team defeated the Spartans 61-58 Thursday evening.
Both teams got off to a rough start in a low-scoring first half. The Mustangs suffered a blow, missing lead scorer, Nick Demeno, who was out with the flu and losing second leading scorer and top rebounder, Steve Kulp, three minutes into play due to an injury.
With two solid starters out, the Mustangs took the brunt of the scoring drought, trailing 10-27 to start off the game. However, during the last few minutes of the first half, the Mustangs began to rebound, knocking five points off their deficit while holding the Spartans scoreless.
Going into the second half down 15-27, the Mustangs worked hard to slowly chip away at the Spartans' lead. With just under a minute of play, second year sophomore Dexter Shy tipped in the go-ahead basket to give the Mustangs their first lead of the night at 59-57.
The Spartans played strategically in the final seconds of action but could not pull ahead. Ultimately the Mustangs outscored the Spartans 46-31 in the second half to win the game by three.
The Mustangs overcame a thin bench with a spectacular all-in effort and team win over the Spartans. Shy led his team with a double-double of 15 points and 10 rebounds for the evening. New comers Shane Isett and Ryan Casper tallied 16 points each, with Casper also contributing six rebounds. Freshman Chris Uhrich racked up nine points, six rebounds and five blocks while Cameron Green added five rebounds.
"This was a great win for this team," commented Mustangs Head Coach Denny Surovec. "To battle back from 17 down late in the first half, showed the grit that these guys have. They could have easily packed it in, but just refused to quit. I am extremely proud of the effort tonight, especially playing short-handed like we were forced to do."
The Mustangs are now 8-7 overall and 7-3 in the EPAC. Next the Mustangs will travel to Johnson College on Saturday Jan. 25. Game time is 12:00 p.m.