(courtesy of yumacs.com) The Yeshiva University men’s basketball team earned an impressive non-conference victory over Fairleigh Dickinson University-Florham, 87-68, at the Max Stern Athletic Center on Wednesday evening. The win snaps a two-game slide for the Maccabees, as they advance to 6-8. The Devils fall to 0-9.
As a team, Yeshiva went 32-for-66 from the field and drained 14 three-point field goals. Leading the team was junior forward Tal Gweta, who scored a career-high 21 points and brought down a personal-best 12 rebounds for a double-double. He blocked three shots and forced two steals. Sophomore guard Simcha Halpert led all players with 35 points, going 13-for-19 from the field and drilling nine three-point field goals in the process.
The Maccabees never trailed at any point in the game. Halpert opened the game with a three-point field goal to give the Macs a 3-0 advantage. He added another field goal from beyond the arc to put the home team up, 10-2, just 2:23 into the contest. Later in the half, sophomore forward Daniel Katz added a free throw to give YU a 15-4 lead with 15:47 left to play in the half.
The Devils were able to go on a run and narrow the deficit to three, at 28-25, with 6:10 to go. The Maccabees countered with a 10-2 run to once again take a commanding lead, 38-27, with 2:17 remaining until halftime. The home team went into the intermission with a 40-32 advantage.
The turning point in the second half was a 10-0 run by Yeshiva, in a span of 2:19, to put YU up, 66-47, with 11:14 remaining in regulation time. During that run, Halpert and sophomore forward Bar Alluf each hit a three-pointer, while sophomore forward Kevin Bokor and freshman guard Yoav Deutsch combined for back-to-back layups to cap it off.
FDU had one more run, as the visiting team was able to cut the deficit to 10 with 7:16 remaining. Halpert single-handedly put the contest out of reach for the opposition, as he scored the game’s next 10 points to put YU up, 80-60, with 3:42 left. He hit two shots from beyond the arc and successfully executed two layups during that stretch. That put the game out of reach for FDU-Florham as Yeshiva went on to earn the victory, 87-68.
For the game, Alluf scored 12 points with four rebounds and three assists. Bokor successfully converted on all three of his field goal opportunities, and added two free throws, for eight points total. He also grabbed seven rebounds. Katz dished out a game-high eight assists, scored five points, and grabbed three rebounds. Deutsch distributed four assists, while junior guard Justin Hod produced four points. Senior forward Ethan Gipsman tallied an assist.
Yeshiva will take a break, but will be back in action on Tuesday, January 23, for a Skyline Conference matchup against the College at Old Westbury. Tip-off at the Max Stern Athletic Center is scheduled for 8:00 p.m.