WATERVILLE, Maine – Senior Zach Leal (York, Maine) became the 26th University of Southern Maine Huskies men's basketball player to reach the 1000-point milestone in a 90-65 loss at the Colby College Mules Tuesday night in a non-conference game.
With the win, Colby extends its win streak to three games and improves to 10-9 overall. Southern Maine drops to 7-13 with the loss.
Sam Jefferson led five Colby players in double-figures with 14 points on 5-of-9 shooting, including four three-pointers. Joe Connelly and Ethan Schlager scored 13 and 12 points respectively, while Alex Dorian and Dean Weiner scored 11 and 10 points each. The Mules shot an outstanding 52.4 percent from the field for the game (33-for-63), and 50.0 percent (15-for-30) from the three-point line. Schlager matched Jefferson with four three-pointers on a 4-for-6 effort, while Dorian was 3-for-4 from long range.
Southern Maine senior James Starks III (Miami, Fla./Miami Killian) led all scorers with 21 points on 10-of-15 shooting. Starks added six rebounds. Senior Jacob Littlefield (Mechanic Falls, Maine/Poland Regional) added 12 points, seven rebounds and three assists. Leal finished with six points.
Led by Connelly's 10 first half points, Colby jumped out in front of USM 39-23 at the break. The Mules were 15-for-32 from the field (46.9 percent) but drained eight three-pointers. Starks had 13 of the Huskies' 23 first-half points as USM started cool from the field making just 9-of-30 field goal attempts. USM shot a blazing 66.7 percent from the field in the second half to score 42 points, but was never able to overcome its first half deficit as Colby continued to shoot well from the floor
Leal, who know has 1002 career points, is the first USM men's basketball player to surpass the 1000 point barrier since Conor Sulilvan (Scarborough, Maine) achieved the feat in 2014. Leal is 366-for-799 from the field in his career for a 45.8 shooting percentage. He has 339 rebounds, 189 assists, 112 steals and 54 blocked shots in his 89-game career. Through 20 games this season, Leal is averaging 18.3 points, 4.7 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 1.4 steals per game while shooting 48.2 percent from the field.
Southern Maine returns home on Saturday (1:00 p.m.) and will face Keene State College in a Little East Conference game.