WALTHAM, Mass. – Before the Bentley University men's basketball team takes on its first Northeast-10 Conference opponent of the season Tuesday, the Falcons face another non-conference test as they'll take on New York Tech on Saturday at 2:30 pm at the Dana Center. The game can be viewed on the NE10 NOW digital network.
It'll be the start of a three-game homestand for the Falcons, sandwiched around Thanksgiving that also includes Stonehill on Tuesday and American International in a non-conference battle Dec. 1. By that point, coach Jay Lawson's team will have played six of its first seven on its home court.
Bentley returns to the Dana Center at 3-1 following a Wednesday night 79-70 loss at the University of Bridgeport. The Falcons were outscored by 27 points from deep as the Purple Knights buried 15 of 36 and limited Bentley to just six of 17. They made 18 of 33 inside the arc but it wasn't enough to overcome the three-point differential.
New York Tech is still looking for its first win under first-year head coach Evan Conti. The Bears are coming off an 82-63 loss to Staten Island in their sixth game of the season. They've also come up short against Assumption, Saint Michael's, Nyack, Division I Hofstra and Adelphi.
A look at the Northeast-10 scoring leaders shows two Falcons among the top five with sophomore guard Mason Webb (Oklahoma City, Okla./Bishop McGuinness HS) and senior forward Chris Hudson (Hodgdon, Maine/Northampton Williston School) both off to strong starts to the season.
Webb, who opened with a career-best 33 against Wilmington (Del.), is at 20.5 while shooting .547 overall and .452 from downtown. At Bridgeport, he scored 18 and improved to 35 of 37 in his career from the free throw line by making three.
Hudson has made 67 percent of his attempts to date and is giving the Falcons 19.8 points, eight rebounds and 1.5 blocks a game. The reigning Northeast-10 Player of the Week is approaching 1,000 career points with his total standing at 957.
Northeast-10 assist leader Jordan Mello-Klein (Sharon/Thayer Academy) is Bentley's third player who averages double-figure points. The junior guard has produced 10.8 points, 8.8 assists and 6.8 rebounds a game through the first four.
Junior forward Pete Blust (Hinsdale, Ill./Hinsdale Central HS), sophomore guard Brian Wright-Kinsey (Brooklyn, N.Y./Brooks School) and senior guard Seth Stankiewicz (Reading, Pa./Hill School) also score at least eight a game for a Falcon team that puts up 87.5 a game. Sophomore Adria Amabilino Perez (Barcelona, Spain) shares the team lead in rebounding with Hudson.
Redshirt senior Jeffrey Hayden is off to a strong start to the season for New York Tech, averaging 18.2 points and 5.9 rebounds. He's moved into eighth on the Bears' all-time scoring list and scored 24 and 27 in back-to-back games against Saint Michael's and Nyack. Two years ago, he led his team with over 23 a game and was voted first-team All-ECC.
Brandon Redendo, a sophomore guard, has come off the bench to average ten points a game and the Bears also receive 10 a game from sophomore wing Collins Onyeike.
New York Tech has shot only .392 as a team during its first six games while seeing the opponents connect at a .504 clip. The Bears have been outrebounded by nearly four a game and have committed 20 more turnovers than they have forced.
Last year, Bentley traveled to Long Island to face the Bears and returned home with a 94-57 win. All-America Ryan Richmond scored 24 points and Hudson posted a 21-point, 13-rebound double-double.