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Binghamton Men's Basketball gets two in a row with 76-69 win

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VESTAL, N.Y. - Binghamton men's basketball shot a record-setting 82 percent in the second half and the Bearcats (4-20, 3-6 America East) put four in double figures en route to a 76-69 victory over UMass Lowell (9-13, 3-6 AE) Saturday afternoon at the Events Center.

Sophomore guard Yosef Yacob scored 12 of his 15 points in the pivotal second half, including a pair of three-pointers in the final 5:26. The Bearcats then made just enough free throws (6-of-12) in the final 2:11 to seal the win - the team's second in a row.

"That was a very good win," head coach Tommy Dempsey said. "It was the best efficiency we've shown ... 60 percent shooting ... if you do that you'll win a lot of games. We got to the foul line, got the ball inside and made jump shots. Overall it was a very good offensive performance and hopefully a sign of things to come."

The Bearcats used a 12-0 run early in the second half to stretch a one-point halftime lead. Sophomore guard Marlon Beck hit a pair of threes during the run, which spanned 3:28 and his last three gave BU a 46-34 lead with 13:34 left. But the River Hawks trimmed their deficit to just four, 60-56, with 5:48 left. That's when Yacob stepped up. He hit a big three from the top of the key with 5:26 left, making it 63-56. Then after the Bearcats had missed twice at the free throw line on back-to-back possessions, Yacob drilled another three with 2:24 left that pushed BU's margin to double-digits, 70-60.

The second half was near perfect for BU, which shot 14-of-17 from the floor, including 5-of-7 from beyond the arc.

Yacob tied his season-high with 15 points (career-high four three-pointers) and freshman forward Willie Rodriguez also tallied 15 - the ninth time in the last 11 games Rodriguez has reached double figures. Freshman forward Bobby Ahearn scored a season-high 13 points and added eight rebounds. Beck wound up with 14 points - 11 in the second half - and five assists. Freshman forward Justin McFadden chipped in eight points and seven boards.

Binghamton hosts Hartford in an ESPN3 game at 7 p.m. on Tuesday.

(Courtesy: Binghamton University Athletics)