ALBANY, N.Y. — The Castleton University men’s basketball team made a furious comeback against Russell Sage, but the Spartans couldn’t get over the hump, falling 72-68 Wednesday night.

The first half was tight throughout and the teams went into the half tied 27-27.

Sage created a little bit of breathing room after the break, fueled by a 6-0 run midway through the half.

The Gators opened up an 11-point lead on a Ryan Long 3-point shot with 8:07 to play and pushed it to 14 points with another Long 3 with 4:35 to play.

Castleton battled back with a 11-0 run to cut the Sage lead to two 1:18 to play and did the same on a Jackson Atty 3 with two seconds left, but Sage iced the game with a pair of free throws.

The Gators’ Jalon Borders led all scorers with 18 points to go with seven rebounds, while Long had 12 points, all coming by the 3-ball.

Johnny Torrance led the Spartans with 14 points and was a 9-for-10 from the charity stripe. Atty scored all of his 12 points from behind the arc. Joe Alamprese was strong on the boards with nine rebounds.

Castleton (3-3) will be at Barre Auditorium for the Granite City Shootout on Friday and Saturday. The Spartans play Northern Vermont University-Johnson at 5 p.m. on Friday and play Norwich at 4 p.m. on Saturday.

MEN’S BASKETBALL

NU 92, Lesley 64

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — The Norwich University men’s basketball team is off to their best start since the 1997-98 season after defeating non-conference opponent Lesley 92-64 Tuesday evening to move to 3-0.

This is also the first time that the Cadets have won three straight contests since they accomplished it during the 2017-18 season.

Donovan Lewis Jr. had 22 points on while shooting 8 of 12 from the field, adding an additional six points from the free throw line, while collecting eight boards. Jalen Olivero had 18 points, seven rebounds and six assists.

Norwich used a 13-2 run to take a 47-37 lead into the half.

After the Cadets scored the first four points of the second half, Lesley was able to shrink their deficit to single digits scoring eight straight points to make it a 52-45 game.

Norwich held a 10-point lead with 7:21 remaining in the contest before Owen Liss grabbed his own rebound and was able to go back up for the lay-in, and converting the free-throw attempt on the and-one. That sparked a seven-point run that gave Norwich a commanding 20-point lead.

Fair Haven product Kohlby Murray had three points, knocking down his lone 3-point attempt, along with three assists in 15 minutes of action.

Norwich will look to continue its hot start in the Granite City Shootout on Friday against Vermont Tech at 1 p.m. They will then close out their time in Barre on Saturday with a 4 p.m. matchup against Castleton.

UVM 81, WPI 48

BURLINGTON — Ryan Davis tallied a career-high 28 points to lead the University of Vermont men’s basketball team (2-1) in an 81-48 victory over WPI (3-1) on Tuesday night at Patrick Gym.

The Catamounts wore camouflage jerseys in honor of Military Appreciation Night.

UVM and the Engineers exchanged early baskets before Vermont went on a 14-4 run to lead 22-11 with 8:58 left in the first half.

Vermont held WPI scoreless for the next 4:14 and extended its lead to 33-13. The Catamounts took a 44-24 lead into the locker room with Davis having 17 points at the break.

WPI matched UVM in the early parts of the second half to stay within 20 points by the 13-minute mark. Justin Mazzulla and Aaron Deloney rattled off four points each as the Catamounts began a 12-2 run to take their first 30-point lead of the night with 8:48 remaining.

Vermont’s largest lead of the night came with 2:15 remaining when Finn Sullivan drilled a corner three to put the Catamounts up 79-40.

The Catamounts continue the home slate Friday, hosting Yale at Patrick Gym. Tip off is slated for 4 p.m.

WOMEN’S BASKETBALL

NU 66, Lesley 50

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — Multiple dominant stretches keyed Norwich University as the Cadets beat Lesley University 66-50 Wednesday night.

The Cadets controlled much of the first quarter and led by nine heading into the second.

Norwich opened up a 10-point lead early in the second quarter, but a 7-0 run by the Lynx put Lesley right back in the game with 5:06 until the half.

The Cadets and Lynx traded runs the rest of the quarter, as Norwich led 32-27 at the half.

Norwich had a dominant 12-2 run to open the second half and were up by 11 heading into the fourth quarter and extended the lead in the final frame.

Four Cadets scored in double figures. MacKenzie Moore led the way with 11 points, followed by Maren McGinn, Erika Thomas and Silas Bernier all with 10 points.

Lesley’s Kizziah Ruff had a game-high 18 points.

Norwich (1-3) plays NVU Johnson in the Granite City Shootout at Barre Auditorium on Friday at 3 p.m.

Lyndon out of GCS

LYNDONVILLE — The Northern Vermont University-Lyndon women’s basketball team will not be competing in this weekend’s Granite City Shootout at the Barre Auditorium.

The Hornets had been scheduled to face Castleton University on Friday and Norwich University on Saturday.

The NVU-Lyndon versus Castleton game has tentatively been rescheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 25, time and location to be determined. Rescheduling information for the NVU-Lyndon versus Norwich game is not yet available.

MLB BASEBALL

Ray wins Cy Young

Former Vermont Lake Monsters pitcher Robbie Ray won the American League Cy Young award Wednesday night.

Ray pitched in one game for the Lake Monsters in the 2010 minor league season, where he struck out two batters in one inning of work.

Ray, who just completed his second season pitching for the Toronto Blue Jays, posted a 13-7 record with a 2.84 earned run average. Ray led the MLB with 248 strikeouts in 2021.

Follow on Twitter: @AAucoin_RH

adam.aucoin@rutlandherald.com

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