After cruising to a blowout victory on Sunday afternoon against Hartwick, the Binghamton men’s basketball team captured another win against Delaware State Wednesday night, 85-64. The Bearcats improved their record to 4-4 and reached .500 for the first time in the young season following a string of losses on the road.
“I think one of the things that I talked to the guys about is bad teams struggle to win anywhere, average teams normally win at home, to be a good team not only do you have to win at home, but you have to win on the road,” said BU head coach Tommy Dempsey prior to Wednesday’s contest. “If you’re ultimately going to become a contender you’re going to have to win road games and this is a chance for us to do that tomorrow [Wednesday] night and I think there’s an excitement in our group to get our first road win.”
Exploding out of the gate to a 25-11 lead, the Bearcats appeared hungry for a much-needed road win. Even though Binghamton had not seen a great deal of zone defense, with the exception of Hartwick, the Hornets (2-6) were simply unable to keep BU’s offense in check. With the offense firing on all fronts, Delaware State certainly found itself feeling the hangover effects on the second night of a back-to-back.
“We came out right from the start and we threw the first punch, got ahead, we got up, eight or 10 [to] nothing and got a lot of stops and turnovers on defense,” Dempsey said. “I just thought our kids were really engaged, and that’s how you have to play on the road. “
In the first half alone, the Bearcats poured in 46 points while shooting a season-high 60 percent clip from the field. Binghamton drained nine from downtown and junior guard J.C. Show spearheaded the offense with 14 points.
Sophomore guard Fard Muhammad earned himself a start against the Hornets although he usually serves as a solid offensive weapon off of the bench. With a season average of approximately 10 points per contest, Muhammad remains a reliable option as a combo guard for Dempsey’s squad.
“Muhammad has been good all year coming off the bench and giving us some firepower,” Dempsey said. “We knew that he was gonna come in [as a freshman] and be able to shoot the ball.”
For BU, the second half featured much of the same as the offensive onslaught continued. Show finished with a team-high 17 points, junior forward Thomas Bruce contributed his fourth double-double of the season and the Bearcats, as a team, shot a beyond-efficient 59 percent from the field. Delaware State never drew closer than 16 points in the second half.
Even though the victory marked Binghamton’s third consecutive win after starting the season 1-4, the squad’s mentality seems to be to just take each contest one at a time. With tough competition such as Army and Penn State approaching in the near future, every game bears significance for a team at the heart of its nonconference schedule.
“Every game you feel like you have to get, it’s just the way it always winds up,” Dempsey said. “As a coach, the only thing that I’m worried about is winning the next game. When that’s over, you put it behind you and win the next game.”
Following its extensive road trip, Binghamton will return home this Saturday for the first time since its season opener. BU will face off against Colgate University with tipoff expected for 2 p.m. from the Events Center in Vestal, New York.