Men’s basketball’s big dance cut short with second round loss

By MICHAEL SEGEL

After a victory on Friday, the Middlebury men’s basketball team was defeated on Saturday by SUNY Brockport in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Their season is now over. 

The two teams stayed close for the entire contest, with Middlebury overcoming an eight point deficit early in the first half and trailing by only two going into the break. They proceeded to come into the second half on a full head of steam thanks in large part to Matt Folger ’20 who provided eight points in the span of a 13-5 run, giving the Panthers a 50-44 advantage. 

That lead didn’t last long, as Brockport came back on a 10-0 surge to take the lead right back. A subsequent 9-2 run for the Golden Eagles followed, and suddenly the lead had ballooned to nine. Middlebury wouldn’t be held down either as they would go on a 10-2 run. With the score at 75-74 , the game would go right down to the wire. The score sat at 83-81 in the final seconds, giving the Panthers an opportunity to come away with a miracle victory but couldn’t pull it off, falling by a final score of 84-81.

Griffin Kornaker ’21 contributed a career-high 28 points in the loss, Jack Farrell ’21 had 18 points, and Folger put together an all around solid performance with 16 points, 9 rebounds, 3 steals, and 3 blocks. Middlebury ends their season on a sour note, but with an impressive 21-6 record.