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Bearcats pick up first home win against Colgate

VESTAL, N.Y. - Binghamton used a 20-6 first-half run to pull away early and the Bearcats (2-4) smothered Colgate (2-4) into 30 percent shooting in a 69-50 win Tuesday night at the Dr. Bai Lee Court at the Events Center.

Binghamton hit 8-of-11 shots to start the game, led by junior guard Marlon Beck, who pumped in 10 points in the first 4:51. Up 17-14 with 12:54 left in the half, BU's defense took over, forcing the visiting Raiders into 11 misses in their last 13 shots of the period. The 20-6 run featured points from six different players and when it was over, the Bearcats brought a 37-22 lead into intermission after shooting 50 percent in the first half.

A 17-5 BU run to open the second half put the game on ice.

Beck hit 4-of-6 field goals, including 3-of-4 from three-point range, to pace BU with a game-high 14 points. Sophomore forward Willie Rodriguez and freshman guard Everson Davis added 10 points apiece. Rodriguez, the reigning America East Player of the Week and the conference's leading scorer, also had six rebounds and three steals.

Freshman center Thomas Bruce chipped in eight rebounds and two blocks and sophomores Justin McFadden and Romello Walker had nine points apiece.

The Bearcats were 25-for-36 from the free throw line.

"It was an important game for us to win tonight and I thought our attention to detail in practice the last couple of days was really good," head coach Tommy Dempsey said. "We were really prepared defensively and we came out an executed. We did a great job on ball screen defense and on their handoffs and we didn't give up threes. That's a team (Colgate) that can get hot with the threes and we held them to 3-for-22 shooting. We contested their shots and I thought that was the key to the game tonight."

Binghamton now readies for a trip to East Lansing and a first-ever matchup with unbeaten and No. 3 Michigan State on Saturday. The noon game is being televised on ESPNU - the first time BU will appear on ESPN's collegiate network. The Bearcats will then stay in Michigan for a Monday night tilt at Oakland University.

(Courtesy: BU Athletics)