Seniors lead men's basketball to 72-58 win at Bowdoin

Senior Jeff Spellman led the Bobcats to a 72-58 win at Bowdoin with his fourth career double-double (21 points, 11 rebounds) on Thursday, December 5, 2019. (File photo by Samuel Mironko '21 for Bates College)

BRUNSWICK, Maine -- Senior Jeff Spellman recorded his fourth career double-double and the Bates men's basketball team rolled to a 72-58 win at Bowdoin in non-conference action Thursday night.

The Bobcats (4-1) got terrific production from their senior class against the Polar Bears (3-4), with the four veteran players combining for 53 points in the contest.

Spellman (Boston, Mass.) led the way, tallying a team-high 21 points and a game-high 11 rebounds. Senior Tom Coyne (Falmouth, Maine) poured in 14 points off the bench on 6-10 shooting and senior Nick Gilpin (Hampden, Maine) added 12 points on 3-6 shooting, three rebounds, two assists and a game-high three steals. Senior Kody Greenhalgh (West Warwick, R.I.) cooled off a bit from previous games but still chipped in six points and four rebounds. 

First-year Omar Sarr (Dakar, Senegal) provided strong support for the four seniors, tallying six points on 3-4 shooting, five rebounds and a game-high five blocked shots.  

David Reynolds paced Bowdoin with a game-high 26 points on 10-18 shooting and a team-high seven rebounds. He scored 19 of those 26 points in the first half. No other Polar Bear finished in double figures. 

A Reynolds three-pointer with 3:35 left in the first half gave Bowdoin a 22-21 lead. But Spellman answered about a minute later with a layup, giving Bates the lead for good. Gilpin followed with a pair of free throws and reigning Maine Rookie of the Week first-year Stephon Baxter (Worcester, Mass.) drilled a three with 1:49 left in the half, putting Bates up 28-22.

With the score at 30-25, Coyne finished the first half with a flourish, converting a layup at the buzzer to extend the lead to seven at the break.

The Polar Bears cut the lead to three points early in the second half after a three-pointer by Sam Grad trimmed the Bates edge to 36-33. Bates responded with a 9-2 run, pushing the lead into double digits after a Baxter jumper with 13:35 remaining. Baxter finished with nine points, three rebounds and a steal.

After struggling from the field in the first half, the Bobcats made almost half their shots in the second half, shooting at a 48.4% clip. They knocked down 5-10 threes in the second half, including two apiece from Gilpin and Coyne.

A Coyne three with 10:21 to go gave Bates its largest lead of the game at 59-41.

Bowdoin got the lead down to 10 with 3:03 left on a Taiga Kagitomi layup, but that's as close as the Polar Bears got the rest of the way. Bowdoin was held to just 36% from the field and the Bobcats grabbed 45 rebounds to Bowdoin's 38. 

The Bobcats return home Saturday for a 4pm contest against Saint Joseph's.