FARMINGTON, Maine – Castleton University took advantage of its size and driving ability, hitting over 50 percent of its field goal attempts as it defeated Maine-Farmington, 83-66, Friday night in a North Atlantic Conference men's basketball game at Dearborn Gym.
Chad Copeland led the Spartans with a season-high 23 points on 7-of-11 shooting from the field, including both three-point shots he attempted, and 7-of-9 shooting from the free throw line. Copeland also pulled down eight rebounds, while Tondi Mushandu finished with 16 points and seven rebounds. As a team, Castleton shot 54.5 percent (30-of-55) from the field and 75.0 percent (21-of-28) from the free throw line.
Maine-Farmington (1-4, 0-2 NAC) hit three shots from behind the three-point line in the first four minutes, two of them by Riley Robinson, to pull into an early 9-9 tie. Edmund Fitzgerald hit a layup to give the Spartans a one-point lead, and then Castleton went on an 8-1 scoring run over a two-and-a-half-minute span to extend its lead to 29-18. Later in the half, the Spartans scored seven unanswered points to establish a 15-point advantage, taking a 42-27 lead into the locker room at halftime.
The margin remained about the same for the early part of the second half, but Castleton seemingly put the game away thanks to an 8-0 scoring run over a three-minute span to extend the Spartan lead to 67-44 with seven minutes remaining in the second half. Maine-Farmington put together a 14-4 scoring run to close to within 13, but the Spartans scored six unanswered points late in the second half to stop the Beavers' comeback attempt.
Ryan Camire hit three three-pointers off the bench to lead the Beavers with 14 points, with Robinson finishing with 13 points and Bill Ruby adding 11 points. Maine-Farmington shot 39.3 percent (24-of-61) from the field, including 9-of-24 from behind the three-point line, and 69.2 percent (9-of-13) from the free throw line.
Castleton won the rebounding battle, 36-29, and scored 46 points in the paint while holding the Beavers to 18 points in the paint. The Spartans have now won five games in a row, their longest winning streak since a five-game stretch Jan. 15-24, 2015.
Castleton (5-1, 2-0 NAC) continues the weekend road trip in Waterville, Maine, against Thomas College Saturday, Dec. 3, starting at 1:00 p.m. Thomas defeated Green Mountain Friday evening, 81-78, to improve to 4-2 overall and 2-0 in the conference.