Middlebury suffered its first loss of the season as visiting Endicott used a 25-3 run over a stretch of 5:44 in the second half, earning a 93-89 victory on Sunday afternoon in Pepin Gymnasium. Middlebury (3-1) remains at home for a 7:00 p.m. contest Tuesday against Rensselaer, while the Gulls are home the following night against Curry.
The game was close in the early minutes with neither team taking a bigger lead than two points. Endicott led 14-12 following a three-pointer by Stephen Basden, but the Panthers countered with a 10-2 run. Matt St. Amour started the burst with a three-pointer field goal, while Jack Daly and Adisa Majors followed with layups as the hosts led 19-16 with 13:48 on the clock. Two more three-pointers by St. Amour sandwiched around a traditional three-point play by Endicott's Joel Villa put Middlebury in front 25-19.
The Gulls tied the game at 25-25 on a basket by Kamahl Walker and later led 30-29 on a trey by Christien Morneweck. The Panthers closed out the final 6:10 of the frame on a 19-6 run for a 48-36 lead the half. St. Amour spearheaded the run with nine points, while Majors added four.
The hosts opened the second stanza scoring seven of the first nine points, gaining its largest lead of the game of 17 (55-38) on a layup by St. Amour with 18:22 left. The Gulls answered with the aforementioned 25-3 run, capped off on a three-point field goal from Vinny Clifford, for a 63-58 lead with 12:38 left. Walker had 10 points for the Gulls during the run, while Daquan Sampson chipped in with five points.
Endicott kept the Panthers at bay during the next few minutes of action, gaining its largest advantage of the contest at eight (80-72) via an old-fashioned three-point play by Max Motroni with 5:02 showing on the clock.
Middlebury slowly chipped away at the deficit, cutting to just two twice at 89-87 and 91-89 on a pair of layups from Jack Daly, but Sampson answered when he converted four-consecutive free throws for the Gulls to ice the victory.
St. Amour led the Panthers, tying a career-high figure with 33 points including 10-11 at the free-throw line to go along with four rebounds and three assists. Daly posted a career-best 22 points on 8-12 shooting and tied a career-high total with five steals, pulling down six rebounds and dishing out six assists. Majors was also in double figures with 16 points going 7-9 from the floor, while Zach Baines chipped in with 12 points and a team-best seven rebounds.
Jake Brown handed out a game-best eight assists, moving him into fifth place in the Middlebury record books with 399 career assists. He surpasses Dave Pentkowski's '75 total of 393.
Walker led four Gulls in double figures with 28 points, while Sampson tallied a double-double of 19 points and a game-best 14 rebounds. Mortoni added 18 points and dished out a team-best six assists, while Chris Lipscomb tallied 14 points, had six rebounds to go with three assists.