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Barrage of three-pointers propels Ramapo College to win at Kean

(Photo by Sunil Sunder Raj)

(Photo by Sunil Sunder Raj)

Ramapo College junior point guard Jimbo Long said the best attribute of this year’s Roadrunners squad is the depth. Playing their third game in six days, the bench provided that spark on Saturday at Kean University with 39 points as Ramapo coasted past Kean 82-62 for their 5th straight victory.

The number 10 ranked Roadrunners record now stands at 19-1 and 12-1 in the NJAC.

In the first half, Long poured in 11 of his 15 points including three trifecta’s. Sophomore guard Lavrone Green came off the bench scoring five quick points putting Ramapo up 29-24 with 8:17 remaining. Next up was freshman guard Connor Romano(10 points) stepping up and burying two shots from beyond the arc as the Roadrunners took a 41-31 advantage into the locker room.

“They were playing back on us and they knew we wanted to go inside,” said Jimbo Long. “We had confidence in our shots falling today and our bench is the key to everything and best in the country. If someone is having an off-night, guys can come off the bench and have a great night for us. Kean has been playing great the last couple of games and can scare you because they make a lot of shots and play hard. I just tried to come out and do my job.”

Picking up where he left off after scoring his 1000th point against Montclair State on Wednesday night at the Bradley Center, junior forward Thomas Bonacum dropped in 14 of his team-high 19 points in the second half. Kean trimmed the lead down to 49-42 with less than five points when Long dropped the hammer sinking a three-pointer from the left wing while getting fouled in the process.

“We shot the ball really well in the first half and at the end of the day our bench is important and guys came in and contributed,” Head Coach Chuck McBreen said. “Cory (Soanes), Connor and Jimbo helped give us a spark in the second half. We were struggling at the beginning of the second half and then we opened up the lead into double figures and pulled away.”

The Roadrunners unleashed their suffocating full court press defense leading to numerous turnovers committed by Kean and transition baskets. Leading 53-45 with 13 minutes left, the Roadrunners went on a 10-0 run to break the game wide open. Ramapo dominated the points in the paint with 36 and totaled 23 points off turnovers. The Roadrunners sank 10 of 19 shots from three-point range.

“We have so many guys that can pressure all game and other teams’ just wear down so in the second half they are not knocking down their shots and legs are gone,” Long said.

“Our whole philosophy us play more people and wear teams’ down and at the end of the day that is what happened,” said McBreen.

Ramapo returns home to the Bradley Center on Wednesday against Rutgers-Newark with tip-off set for 7:30 p.m. Back in December, the Roadrunners defeated the Scarlet Raiders 68-46.

“Our goal was to win four games and get back on another winning streak,” said Long. “We’re just looking forward to Rutgers-Newark, keep it rolling and main priority.”

“It was a big stretch for us, we have a rest day tomorrow and get back to the drawing board on Monday,” McBreen said. “A big week ahead for us with Rutgers’ Newark and The College of New Jersey.”

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Sunil Sunder Raj

Since July of 2014 Sunil Sunder Raj has been with In The Zone. Sunil has experience covering minor league baseball, high school and college sports. A beat writer for the Rockland Boulders for six years, Ramapo College men’s basketball for four years, NJIT men’s basketball and Seton Hall women’s basketball. Now focusing on feature articles about athletes, coaches and sports media professionals. A graduate of Ramapo College of New Jersey with a bachelor of arts degree in journalism.
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