SPARKILL, NY – The University of the District of Columbia men's basketball team was defeated, 87-61 by East Region foe Stonehill College in its season opener Saturday night and the 2nd night of the Conference Challenge Tournament hosted by St. Thomas Aquinas College.
UDC (0-1) was led offensively by transfer guard Zachary Olukanni and freshman guard Juanye Colon, who scored 11 and 10 points, respectively. Junior transfer forward Kenneth Stancell added a team-best seven rebounds in 12 minutes played off the bench.
Stonehill (1-0), a member of the Northeast 10 Conference, featured five double-figure scorers, including a game-high 17 points by Will Moreton, and double-double efforts by reserves Andrew Sims (11 points, 12 rebounds) and Michel Boen (11 points, 11 rebounds).
The Firebirds scored the first bucket of the game – a layup by senior guard Kevin Cox – but it was all Stonehill from there. The Skyhawks soared on a 9-0 run and never looked back. They would out-shoot UDC, 61-percent to 31-percent from the field and 38-percent to 25-percent from three-point range, they were a perfect 11-of-11 from the foul line while the Firebirds were 0-for-2, and they committed four fewer turnovers than UDC (11-7). Stonehill would lead 52-25 at the half.
UDC went on to out-score SC, 36-35 in the 2nd half, but it was too little too late. Senior guards Quadire Truesdale and Danny Shand scored all seven and six of their respective points in the closing period, as did junior transfer forward Consolo Adams (six points). As a team, the Firebirds began to find their offensive rhythm as they shot 46-percent from the field, 33-percent from three-point range, and got to the foul line for 15 attempts – of which they made 10.
Next up, UDC will take on Wilmington University of the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference tomorrow at 2 p.m.