By Hailey Mull
The Worcester State Lancers men’s basketball team faced off against the Westfield State Owls last Wednesday (Feb. 9), in an intense game with an unfortunate end for the Lancers. It has been a rocky season for the team so far, with ten wins and eleven losses, with four games left.
The first few minutes of the game took a toll on the Lancers, with the Owls taking advantage of the Lancer’s exhaustion. But, not backing down, the Lancers took this as a challenge, with Ryan Rubenskas scoring the first basket with a layup. Erik Bjorn showed his defensive prowess in the first half, with tenacious defense that slowed down the Owl offense; nevertheless, it wasn’t enough to stop Westfield’s Jordan Wiggins, a junior, and Kumar Brown, a senior, both of whom put on a show, with a pair of dunks between them.
The Lancers finished the first half 31-28. Westfield, took some time to head back, and get their heads in the game, and the Lancers came back in the second half even better than before. The chemistry was thick and the passion showed on – and off – the court, as the crowd continued to show remarkable energy throughout the rest of the second half. Coach Hundley was even encouraging the crowd to make more noise at one point.
Eventually, the Owls caught a lead on the Lancers and never let it go, but the perseverance from the Lancers never stopped either. The Lancers fought long and hard, although unfortunately, the game ended 71-65 in a Westfield win.
Ryan Rubenskas tallied 15 points, Erik Bjorn had nine rebounds, and Sam Dion had three assists. Point Guard Corey Oliver explained that the team was “prepared for zone defense,” although they “lost the momentum” and began to “hold the ball for too long.” The team can only go up from here, he said, learning from mistakes and continuing to work together.