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Ramapo College races past William Paterson in home opener 87-65

Tuesday night at the Bradley Center not just marked the 2017-18 home and NJAC opener for the Ramapo College men’s basketball team against William Paterson University but an opportunity to recognize the achievements of the 2016-17 squad. In a pre-game ceremony, head coach Chuck McBeen along with senior players led by Thomas Bonacum unveiled a banner that marked the school record 26 wins, 14 consecutive wins, 16-2 NJAC record and reaching the 2nd round of the NCAA Division III Tournament.

“There was some juice in the crowd and everybody was excited,” said McBreen.

“We have been waiting awhile to see the banner and didn’t get the rings for awhile and until the fall and to see the banner was awesome but coach said it was last season and now focus on this season and to move forward” said Nick Stanek.

Both teams’ struggled from the field early on in the first half but the combination of Stanek and Patrick Peterson sparked a Roadrunners run that led to an 18-10 advantage with less than 11 minutes remaining. Ramapo had to contend with foul trouble as Christopher Moseley and Josh Ford each picked up two fouls apiece not even five minutes into the game.

Stanek caught fire, tallying 15 points of his game-high 23 points including a trio of trifectas by the six-minute mark that increased the margin to 28-18. Sophomore guard Rob McWilliams came off the bench scoring five of his seven points in a 46 second span as Ramapo carried a 39-25 lead into the locker room.

“I struggled the first two games of the season and just tried to clear my head and go out and play my game,” Stanek said. “My teammates had fun tonight and luckily I was hitting my shots tonight and worked out. Pat (Peterson) was great off the bench and Rob Lewis and Rob McWilliams gave us great minutes and a good team win all-around. We just tried to keep the pressure on them in the second half and kept the gas on the pedal.”

“Nick and Pat gave us great minutes as well as Rob Lewis who had 10 and eight off the bench and Pat with 16, nine off the bench,” McBreen said. “At the end of the day we got into severe trouble and rule when they get two fouls we take them out. I told Rob (McWilliams) to be aggressive and he did that when he had that spurt. Size-wise they couldn’t match-up with us and we dominated the glass and punished them down low.”

In the second half, the Roadrunners dialed up the defensive with a full court press that forced William Paterson into committing numerous turnovers and subsequently transition points. Ramapo crashed the boards as well and pounded the ball inside outscoring the Pioneers in the paint 46 to 18 and dominating in rebounds 50 to 28.

Picking up his fourth foul with 11 minutes remaining, McBreen brought back in Moseley with a couple of minutes left and turned out to be historic moment with 2:12 left as Moseley knocked down a jumper for his 1000th career point.

“I put him back in the game to get it and not wanting him to get it on the road,” McBreen said. “I knew he was in foul trouble and never got it going and glad to get him back on the floor. A big win in the conference and trying to get our feet under us and on a roll.”

Ramapo (2-1, 1-0 NJAC) does not return to the hardwood floor until next Monday at Medgars Ever College with tip-off at 7:30 p.m. The Roadrunners are back at the Bradley Center on Wednesday November 29th against Montclair State University at 7:30 p.m.

“A couple of days to prepare for Medgar Evers and then three huge NJAC games in one week with Monclair State, Stockton and Rutgers-Newark,” McBreen said. “The cliché is take it one game at a time and say next game is the biggest.”

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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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