WEST LONG BRANCH, N.J. - Jamee Jackson (Newark, N.J.) scored a career-high 20 points on 8-for-12 shooting as the Quinnipiac University men's basketball team erased a 14-point second half deficit to defeat Monmouth, 72-70, Thursday night at the Multipurpose Activity Center. Jackson's free throw with 14 seconds left gave Quinnipiac its first lead since the five-minute mark of the first half, and the lead stood up. With the win, the Bobcats improve to 10-3 (2-1 NEC), while the Hawks fall to 5-10 (1-2 NEC).
Dominique Langston (Bridgeport, Conn.) contributed 14 points and six rebounds, while James Johnson (Queens, N.Y.) had 13 points. Deontay Twyman (Olney, Md.) and Ike Azotam (Boston, Mass.) had 10 points apiece, with Azotam adding a game-high eight rebounds, six on the offensive glass. All told, Quinnipiac grabbed 20 of its 39 rebounds on the offensive glass to outrebound its 13th straight opponent to begin the season, 39-26. The Bobcats played without its rebounding leader, Justin Rutty (Newburgh, N.Y.) due to injury.
Mike Myers Keitt had a game-high 21 points for Monmouth, while Ed Waite added 18 points and a team-high seven rebounds.
Quinnipiac led for much of the first 14 minutes of play, and established an eight-point edge, 28-20, on a Langston bucket at the 6:58 mark. But the Hawks responded with an 18-0 run, covering nearly the next six minutes, giving Monmouth a 38-28 lead. Twyman put an end to the run with a trifecta at the 2:05 mark. A back-and-forth final two minutes resulted with the Hawks leading, 44-35, at the break.
Myers Keitt led the Hawks with 13 points on 4-for-6 shooting, including 3-for-3 from long range. Waite added 10 points and five rebounds. Jackson led the Bobcats with 11 points, making all five shots he attempted. The Hawks shot 60.0 percent (15-25) to the Bobcats' 40.0 percent (14-35) in the first half. Monmouth made 4-of-6 three-point attempts (.667) to the Bobcats' 4-of-16 (.250).
Monmouth extended its lead to 14 points, 52-38, on Myers Keitt's three-point play at the 16:51 mark of the second half. Quinnipiac cut the deficit in half with 12 of the next 14 points, including seven points from Jackson. The run cut the deficit to five points with 11:37 left in regulation. Down seven with 7:19 to go, the Bobcats went on a 6-0 run to close to within one point by the 5:34 mark on a jumper from Twyman.
A pair of Johnson free throws with 1:54 remaining tied the game at 70-70. Neither team connected on a field goal the rest of the way and Jackson was fouled with the Hawks in the two-shot penalty and 14 seconds remaining. Jackson missed the front end, but connected on the second to give the Bobcats a one-point lead, 71-70.
On the ensuing possession, James Hett was fouled on a drive to the basket with three seconds left. He missed both free throws, Langston corralled the rebound and made one-of-two from the charity stripe. With 2.5 seconds left, Monmouth threw the ball away on the inbounds, and the Bobcats escaped with the win.
For the game, the Hawks outshot the Bobcats, 56.8 percent (25-44) to 40.0 percent (26-65) from the floor, 50.0 percent (8-16) to 24.0 percent (6-25) from long range, and 60.0 percent (12-20) to 58.3 (14-24) from the free-throw line. The Bobcats had 18 assists to just nine turnovers, while the Hawks had 14 assists and 17 turnovers.
The Bobcats return to action Saturday, when they travel to Hackensack, N.J., to take on Fairleigh Dickinson. Opening tip from Stratis Arena is scheduled for 4 p.m.