PAXTON, MASS: The Norwich University men's basketball team was defeated in its Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) opener, 86-67, by Anna Maria College on Saturday afternoon at Fuller Center.
Norwich (2-11, 0-1 GNAC) and Anna Maria (4-10, 1-0 GNAC) opened the first half by trading baskets until 13:23 when the Cadets built a five-point following five-consecutive points from junior forward Kyle Booth (Northfield, Vt.) who owned a hot hand in the early going. However, the AMCATS closed the five-point gap with 11:19 left in the half.
The teams then continued to go back and forth until there was 1:28 left in the half. Anna Maria closed out the remainder of the half with an 8-0 run to go into the locker room with a 38-30 lead over the Cadets.
After the half, the AMCATS continued to build their lead to as much as 18 points by stringing together an extended run.
Norwich continued to battle throughout the second half reducing the lead to single digits at the 7:21 mark as freshman guard Benjamin Mitchell (Poole, Ga.) knocked down a trey to make it 67-58. That would be as close as the team would get in its comeback attempt as the AMCATS were able to maintain a comfortable lead through to the final buzzer.
The Cadets welcomed back sophomore guard Samuel-Noah Osarenkhoe (Stockholm, Sweden) who led the reserves with six points in his return from a lengthy absence.
The team was led by Booth and sophomore forward Donovan Lewis Jr. (Savannah, Ga.) who both tallied 18 points with Booth adding four assists and a pair of steals to his final line. Sophomore guard Spencer Conatser (Reno, Nev.) grabbed a team-high six boards in addition to his six points.
Norwich will take to the road for a non-conference matchup on Tuesday when it battles Northern Vermont University-Johnson at 6 p.m.