Men's Basketball Takes Down Maritime in ECAC Tournament

Montclair, NJ (3/4/09) – Freshman guard Ali Mix (East Orange, NJ / East Orange Campus) pumped in a season-high 27 points while sophomore Jon Georges (West Orange, NJ / St. Peter’s Prep) put up a solid double-double with 22 points and 18 rebounds as top-seeded Montclair State knocked off No. 8 seed Maritime College, 79-67 in the opening round of the ECAC Division III Metro Men’s Basketball Tournament at the MSU Student Recreation Center on Wednesday evening.

Junior forward Daniel McRae (Orange, NJ / Newark Tech) had 12 points and eight rebounds as the Red Hawks now advance into the semifinals. MSU (21-6) will go on the road and face No. 4 seed Lehman College (at 76-63 winner over No. 5 Kings Point) on Saturday, March 7 at a time to be determined. The Red Hawks are making their sixth ECAC appearance overall and first since 2002. Montclair won the Metro title in 2000.

Junior guard Kevin Josey (Staten Island, NY / Monroe Webster) came off the bench to score 22 points for Maritime which concluded its season at 15-13. The Privateers were making their second appearance in the ECAC Tournament have last played in 1998.

Montclair State built an 11-point halftime lead, 40-29 thanks in part to a 55-percent shooting first half. Georges had 11 points and nine rebounds in the first 20 minutes while Mix pumped in 13 as the two combined to shoot 9-of-12 from the floor.

In the second half, Montclair extended that lead to 16 points as Georges hit a free throw to make the score 53-37 with 13:50 left in the game. The lead would stay in double digits over the next three minutes, however Maritime began to chip away at the advantage. Trailing 56-46, Josey scored five straight points, including a deep three to close the gap to 61-56. Twice more the Privateers would get within five, the last coming on a layup by Sam Porte (Bronx, NY / HS for Math, Science and Engineering) that made the score 64-59 with 5:12 to play.

But Georges put back a missed field goal attempt and McRae threw the third of his thunderous dunks in the game as Montclair restored the lead to 68-59 with 4:31 to go. A jumper by Jermelle Fraser (Bronx, NY / Cardinal Spellman) brought Maritime to within 68-61 with 3:55 remaining but Mix sank one from the foul line and Georges added a layup as the MSU advantage got back to 10 points (71-61) with 2:44 left.

Sophomore guard James Williams (Englewood, NJ / Dwight Morrow) added nine points and six rebounds for the Red Hawks, who outrebounded Maritime 44-33, including 16 offensive boards – nine by Georges. Ken Dudley (Willingboro, NJ / Burlington Tech) added six points and four boards as Montclair also held a huge advantage at the foul line going 25-of-36 while Maritime was 8-of-10.

Senior guard Rashawn Pringle (Bronx, NY / Frederick Douglas) recorded 12 points, four rebounds and three assists for the Privateers, who got 11 points and four rebounds from Fraser.