LANCASTER, Pa. - Shaakir Gibbs tied his season high with 35 points and Nicko Balis scored all but two of his 27 points in the second half as the men's basketball team rallied from an 18-point deficit to top host Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology, 100-97, on Saturday afternoon.
Gibbs and Balis combined for 20 of the team's 30 field goals on the day while Kanen Horton and Kevin Woods scored double figures in leading Montgomery to its sixth win of the season and second over the Bulldogs. It also snapped the Mustangs' three-game losing streak.
Playing with a limited roster for much of the season's second half, the men's team has battled game in and game out. And Saturday afternoon was no different as the team staged an impressive come-from-behind victory, outscoring Thaddeus Stevens 64-52 in the second half.
"The guys did a good job of fighting for 40 minutes today, especially since we still have a limited roster (only 7 players available)," said Head Men's Basketball Coach Denny Surovec. "We didn't play well in the first 25 minutes, but our energy gave us a chance to come back."
When the men's team has its "energy," it is clicking on all cylinders. And that was reflected in the scoresheet.
The seven-player squad had a rough opening 25 minutes but was within nine points trailing 45-36 at halftime. The Bulldogs stretched the lead to 18 in the second half but saw it evaporate thanks in part to Gibbs and Balis.
"Gibbs was big again for us, and Balis fought through injuries to have a huge second half," Surovec said.
Balis converted 10 of 11 field goals, including five of six from three-point range, along with team highs in assists (4) and steals (3). Gibbs drained three of his five attempts from beyond the arc and made good on 12 of 18 free throws.
Horton and Woods combined to go 16 of 18 from the foul line. Horton finished with 15 points and four rebounds, while Woods scored 13 points and added three steals. Brendan Watton tied Balis and Woods with three steals.
Montgomery shot over 51 percent for the game and was an impressive 30 of 38 (78.9%) from the foul line.
The men's team is back home Tuesday at 7 pm to face Delaware County Community College.
- By Bob Kent, Sports Information Director