By: Mike Rose
All season long the Brockport men's basketball team has gotten sparks from unlikely sources. Friday night, it was Milo Scheve, Alex Tavarez and Zach Rice who proved to be difference-makers off the bench as they helped lead the Golden Eagles' second-half comeback to defeat the Potsdam Bears 83-74.
On a night where Brockport got off to another sluggish start and appeared like they may gift wrap a victory to Potsdam, they found a way down the stretch again behind a collective effort.
"I just think we have an amazing team this year," Scheve said. "This year just feels special. We just have so many pieces and today we were able to bring it together."
It took nearly seven minutes into the game for the Golden Eagles to eclipse 10 points and they traded baskets with Potsdam through much of the first half. Rice appeared poised to swing the momentum when his steal and slam over Potsdam's Parker Kelly cut the deficit down to one with 5:13 to play in the opening 20 but the Golden Eagles failed to build on momentum boost. Ultimately a Caquan Wester lay-in with 30 seconds to play gave Brockport a one-point edge at the break.
Out of the locker room, Potsdam began on a 9-4 burst to build a five-point lead before Scheve would be called upon for minutes in the frontcourt after Jacob Oka picked up his third foul. Entering the night Scheve had recorded just 14 points and 18 rebounds in 63 minutes of action on the season, but he was ready for his moment.
Scheve racked up 11 points and six rebounds in nine minutes on the floor while shooting a perfect 4-of-4 from the field. While there were some hiccups, including a 2-of-6 run at the charity stripe and four fouls defensively, his effort and energy kept the Golden Eagles afloat.
Finally, the freshman Tavarez took center stage down the stretch. He darted to the rim to finish off a three-point play with 4:42 to play to give the Golden Eagles a lead they would not relinquish the rest of the night. Overall Tavarez racked up 11 points in the final five minutes of the game to help propel Brockport across the finish line.
Wester was a steady hand for Brockport throughout the night as the freshman posted 17 points and six rebounds as the lone Golden Eagles' starter to crack double figures. Tavarez finished with a team-high 18 points while Rice posted 10.
Potsdam was powered by another scoring barrage from Colton Huestis who finished with a game-high 26 points. Huestis scored his career-high of 30 in the first matchup between the two teams. Jeff Williamson added 13 points while Kawar Singh scored seven points and grabbed 16 rebounds before fouling out late in the second half.
With the win Brockport (12-5, 8-3) continued to keep pace in the upper half of the SUNYAC standings as they remained in third place. The Golden Eagles will look to extend their winning streak to six on Saturday, Jan. 27, when they host the Plattsburgh Cardinals. The Cardinals were the last team to defeat Brockport in a matchup that was decided on free throws at the buzzer following a 15-point blown lead in the final five minutes. Tip-off is scheduled for 4 p.m. inside The Vlog.