Framingham, Mass. – The Framingham State University men's basketball team received a career-high 38 points from senior guard Mann Payton (Fitchburg, Mass.) as the Rams closed the regular season with an 82-74 victory over MCLA in Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) action at the Athletic Center.
- Score: Framingham State 82, MCA 74
- Records: Framingham State (6-18, 5-7 MASCAC), MCLA (6-18, 2-10 MASCAC)
- Location: Athletic Center – Framingham, Mass.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
- The Rams led 9-8 after a layup from Payton with just under 15 minutes remaining in the first.
- The Trailblazers would use a 14-2 run over the next four minutes to lead 22-11. Junior Antoine Montgomery paced the Trailblazers with four points on the spurt.
- The Rams answered with a run of their own and pulled within two, 26-24, with 6:50 on the clock. MCLA pushed the lead back seven, 35-28.
- The Rams countered again with a run of their own, tying the game at 35-35 after a three from freshman Tomas Donoyan (Belmont, Mass.), a layup from sophomore Cameren McCloud-Thomas (Springfield, Mass.) and a pair of free throws by Payton after a tech was called on the MCLA bench.
- The two teams traded buckets down the stretch of the first and the game went to the half tied at 39-39.
- The Trailblazers led 56-52 just over six minutes into the second. The Rams tied the game at 60-60 with 8:44 on the clock after a layup from McCloud-Thomas and a jumper from freshman Matthew Rohelia (North Providence, RI).
- After the tie, the Rams rattled off an 11-2 run over the next six three minutes including a pair of three point plays from Payton to take a 71-62 lead.
- The Trailblazers were able to pull within four, 75-71, on a layup from sophomore Mike Demartinis with just over three remaining, but the Rams were able to seal the victory with four free throws from Payton in the final minute.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS:
- Payton tallied his career-high 38 connecting on 14-of-32 from the floor and filled the stat sheet with eight boards, four assists, two steals and a pair of blocks.
- McCloud-Thomas finished the game with 12 points and eight boards, while Rohelia chipped in with 13 off the bench. Junior Tyri Hampton (Fitchburg, Mass.) paced the Rams on the glass with 14 boards.
- The Trailblazers were led by 25 points from sophomore Quran Davis. Davis added three boards, two steals and two blocks.
- Demartinis finished the game with 14 points, while Montgomery added 11.
- With the victory, the Rams secured the fifth seed in next week's MASCAC Tournament.
- Prior to the game, the Rams recognized their two seniors – Payton and Khaniel Bruce (Cambridge, Mass.) as well as Sean Morrison who has been with the team the past three years as part of Team Impact.
The Rams are back in action on Tuesday in the opening round of the MASCAC Men's Basketball Tournament when the travel to fourth seed Bridgewater State.