The Central Connecticut men's basketball team fell to 5-14 overall and 1-5 in Northeast Conference action with a 86-73 loss on the road at Fairleigh Dickinson on Saturday afternoon. The Knights improve to 8-12 overall and are now 4-2 in the league.
Junior Faronte Drakeford led the offense with a team-high 20 points, including 8-of-8 from the free-throw line. Central made 16-of-18 from the line in the loss.
Junior Malcolm McMillan added 14 points including a pair of threes. Freshman Matt Mobley had 15 points on 5-of-12 shooting. He averaged 18.5 points in a 1-1 week for CCSU after scoring a career-high 22 points in a win at Wagner on Thursday night. He added three assists and a pair of steals on Saturday. Sophomore Brandon Peel added 10 points and six rebounds.
The Knights came out flying in the first half and led by as many as 23 before taking a 45-35 lead at halftime. They were 18-of-34 from the field and hit five threes to build a 35-12 lead with 9:12 left before halftime. Central answered with a 16-5 run, and cut the lead to 40-28, with under two minutes to play.
FDU answered with five quick points to build the lead back to 17. McMillan hit a pair of free-throws just before halftime to cut the deficit to 15. Central hit just 11-of-27 from the field, they were 1-of-8 from three and missed seven straight before the half. Mobley had 11 to lead Central. They were outrebounded 23-11 in the first half.
The Blue Devils quickly cut the Knight lead to 58-40 but FDU answered with a 10-4 run to push it back to 58-40 with 14:32 left in the second half. Central answered with a 10-3 run to cut the lead to 61-50.
Fairleigh Dickinson answered again, building a 69-54 lead before a three-point play from junior Juwan Newmen cut it to 12 with 7:44 left. With the lead down to 10, the Knights answered with 10 straight points to push it to 79-59 with under five minutes to play.
Central returns to action next Thursday night on the road at St. Francis University. The game is the first for the Blue Devils on the Western PA swing, they will also play at Robert Morris on Saturday.