Vasiliadis Free Throws Lift Johns Hopkins over Ursinus, 77-75
• Score: Johns Hopkins-77, Ursinus-75
• Records: JHU (7-5, 3-2 CC) • UC (6-6, 3-2 CC)
• Location: Collegeville, PA • Helfferich Hall
• The Short Story: Graduate student Austin Vasiliadis stole the ball and then sank two free throws with 1.9 seconds remaining as the Johns Hopkins men’s basketball team beat host Ursinus, 77-75, Saturday afternoon. Hopkins drained a school-record 15 three-pointers in the game and converted 48.4 percent of its shots from behind the arc.
How it Happened
• Hopkins led this one early but could not push its lead to more than five in the opening six minutes. Ursinus used a 9-0 run, getting buckets from four different players, to take a 19-13 lead with 11:02 to play in the half.
• The Blue Jays answered with a 7-1 spurt, capped by a Nikhil Panu triple at 7:29 to knot the score at 20. A Matt Knowles three-point play put the Bears back on top. The teams went back-and-forth over the ensuing six minutes and Ursinus led 33-31.
• Senior Josh Wetzler then grabbed the lead for Hopkins with a conventional three-point play at 1:40. He followed with bucket in the paint and then Vasiliadis hit a three to send the Blue Jays into the half with a 39-33 lead.
• Hopkins picked up where it left off, pushing its lead to 14 at the 17:12-mark on a Michael Gardner three-pointer to make it 49-35. Ursinus trimmed the deficit to eight just 84 seconds later with a 7-1 spurt. Gardner and junior Kyle Doran then sandwiched threes around a Sam Gordon free throw and the Blue Jays led 57-44.
• The Bears twice cut the deficit to single digits over the next three minutes, but the Jays responded each time.
• Hopkins took its largest lead of the game (14) with 8:30 to play on a Ryan Curran layup to make it 70-56. The Blue Jays’ offense went cold from there while the Bears’ heated up. Matt Knowles drained a pair of free throws at 8:22 to spark a 14-0 run that spanned four and a half minutes and tied the game. Eric Williams, Jr. punctuated the run with a triple at the 2:57-mark.
• Sophomore Daniel Vila ended the run with a jumper at 2:22 to put Hopkins back on top, 72-70. The lead was short-lived however as Shane Stark went 3-of-4 from the line to swing the lead back to Ursinus. Knowles followed with a pair of his own from the line with 15 ticks on the clock and the Bears led 75-72.
• Hopkins wasn’t going to let this one slip away however. Junior Kyle Doran sank a three-pointer, his fourth on the day and the team’s 15th, with 6.5 seconds to play to tie the game. Vasiliadis then intercepted a Bears’ pass and drew a foul with 1.9 seconds to go. He sank both shots from the charity stripe to put the Blue Jays up 77-75. Gardner got a steal on the ensuing Ursinus possession to seal the win.
What it Means
• Johns Hopkins improves to 50-44 against Ursinus and has won seven straight in the series. The Blue Jays have won four straight at Helfferich Hall. Johns Hopkins improves to 50-44 against Ursinus and has won seven straight in the series. The Blue Jays have won four straight at Helfferich Hall.
• Hopkins has won four straight and five of its last six.
• Head coach Bill Nelson has 597 career wins, leaving him just three shy of the 600-win milestone. He also has 492 wins at Hopkins.
Inside the Box Score
• It is two years to the date from the last time the Blue Jays won a game in the final seconds. On January 7, 2015, Jimmy Hammer hit a three-pointer at the buzzer to beat Haverford, 80-78.
• Doran led all scorers with 18 points and had a team-high six rebounds. He went four-of-five from three and six-of-nine from the field.
• Vasiliadis finished with 14 points and a game-high seven assists. He now has 314 career assists, moving back John Rutter for third on Hopkins’ all-time list. He is 54 shy of tying Glen Wall ’84 for second.
• Gardner also finished in double figures, chipping in 11 points while handing out a career-best five helpers.
• Zach Quattro led the Bears with 17 points as he was perfect from the field (6-of-6 FG, 4-4 3 FG). Knowles added 13 points while Stark had 12 and a game-high seven rebounds. Williams, Jr. chipped in 10 points as the Bears had four players in double figures.
For the Record
• Hopkins converted a record 15 three-pointers on the afternoon, breaking the record of 14 set on January 4, 2002 against Bethany.
• Johns Hopkins returns home to host Dickinson on Tuesday, January 10. Tip-off is set for 7:00 pm at Goldfarb Gym.