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BJ Cardarelli’s Hot Hand Keeps Wilmington Men’s Basketball at Bay in 71-57 Loss Against Southern New Hampshire

MBB: Southern New Hampshire 71 - Wilmington 57

Sunday, December 30, 2012 - Newark, Del.

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Junior Herb Dennis drives to the hoop in the first half against Southern New Hampshire. He finished with 13 points and five assists. Copyright 2012; Wilmington University.



Senior Brandon Fox lays one home in the second half against Southern New Hampshire. He led the Wildcats with 15 points and seven rebounds. Copyright 2012; Wilmington University.

With the game within four points for the Wilmington University men’s basketball team with just over six minutes remaining in regulation, Southern New Hampshire used the hot hands of Aleksandar Dobrovic and BJ Cardarelli from beyond the three-point arc to keep the Wildcats at bay, pulling away for a 71-57 victory on Sunday afternoon at the WU Athletics Complex.

The Wildcats (2-10 overall) stormed back to cut the second half lead too as little as four points with 6:14 to play, but SNHU’s (7-3 overall) Dobrovic hit a pair of three pointers, the first being from three steps beyond the arc, while Cardarelli capped an outstanding shooting afternoon with a three of his own to close the door on the Wilmington comeback.

The Penmen, who only led by three points at the halftime break, extended their lead to as many as 13 early in the second half before the Wildcats started to make their run. The Wildcats started feeding the ball down allowing senior Brandon Fox to go to work and bring his team back into the mix of the game.

Senior Isiah Mason started the comeback by hitting a pair of free throws to bring it to within 10 points with 8:41 remaining in the contest. With nearly a minutes passing on the scoreboard with neither team able to put the ball through the hoop, James Pee cut the deficit to single digits with his own pair of free throws. Herb Dennis forced a Penmen turnover on the visitors’ ensuring possession and Fox grabbed an offensive rebound and put back the layup to make it 54-48 with 7:09 to play.

Another SNHU turnover came the ball back to the Wildcats and Dusan Kojic fed Fox down low who put home the layup while being fouled to make it 54-50, the closest the margin has been since the start of the second half. He would miss the following free throw, however.

Dobrovic hit a pair of free throws to put the Penmen back up six points before Fox spun and laid home another bucket in the paint to make it a four point gam once again with 6:14 showing on the clock.

The dagger may have been the Penmen’s ensuing possession, as Dobrovic hit his deep three-pointer from the left wing with the shot clock running out in what seemed like would be a good defensive possession for the Wildcats. Wilmington would only be able to cut the lead to six the rest of the match.

Fox led the Wildcats for the third straight game, scoring a team high 15 points and grabbing a team high seven rebounds. He shot 6-of-11 from the floor for the game, but hit 5-of-7 in the second half. Kojic went perfect from the floor, scoring eight points on 3-for-3 shooting while Herb Dennis scored 13 points while playing in all but one minute. Dennis also passed out a game high five assists.

Cardarelli finished with a game high 19 points for the Penmen, shooting 8-for-11 from the floor, including a 3-for-3 performance from downtown. Dobrovic tallied 17 points while the team’s leading scorer Rodney Sanders added 14 points.

The Wildcats shot 20-for-47 from the floor for the game, but only hit 4-of-18 from three-point territory and missed 10 free throws, going 13-for-23 from the foul line. Southern New Hampshire shot 23-for-52, hitting 8-of-23 from three-point land and only 17-of-26 from the foul line.

Wilmington returns to Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference action after the New Year, rounding out their season long four-game home stand on Saturday, January 5 against Dominican. The women kick start the CACC doubleheader with a 1 p.m. tip, followed by the men at 3 p.m.