Bates men defeat William Paterson 68-54 in first round of tournament


Junior Zak Ray had a game-high 17 points on 5-of-7 three-point shooting for the Bobcats in their season opener on Friday.

WILLIMANTIC, Conn. – Zak Ray (Bangor, Maine) and teammate Bryan Wholey (Marshfield, Mass.) teamed up for 32 points in Bates College’s 68-54 win over the Pioneers of William Paterson University Friday during the first round of the 25th Annual Eastern Tip-Off Tournament held at Francis E. Geissler Gymnasium on the Eastern Connecticut State University campus.

Junior forward Rob Stockwell (Temple, N.H.) had 12 points and a game-high 16 rebounds, and senior guard Sean Cahill (Worcester, Mass.) added 14 points with five assists and five rebounds as four Bobcats scored in double figures.

The Bobcats' win advances them to Saturday’s championship game against tournament host Eastern Connecticut, which defeated Mitchell College 82-73 in the second game Friday night, while William Paterson will compete in the third-place game. Bates and the host Warriors will play at 3 p.m. Saturday.

In their first appearance at the annual tip-off tournament, the Bobcats never trailed for the entire game. William Paterson came within three during a comeback run late in the first half but was held off by Ray’s shooting dominance. Ray, the junior guard, recorded 17 points on 5-of-7 shooting from three-point land, and added three steals. Sophomore guard Wholey had 15 points.

Turnovers and fouls made an impact on the final score for both teams, with William Paterson recording 20 turnovers and the Bobcats 21. Led by Stockwell, Bates outperformed William Paterson on the boards, 35 to 22.

Junior forward Luis Martinez (Passaic, N.J.) lead the Pioneers with 12 points, while guards Joey Spiegel (Teaneck, N.J.) and Kelvin DeLosAngeles (Perth Amboy, N.J.) both had 10.

The tournament resumes on Saturday with the third place game beginning at 1 p.m. and the championship game following at 3 p.m.