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3 Things: Close games, double OT and more from the America East

Oh, and Vermont is still undefeated

NCAA Basketball: MD Baltimore Cty at Virginia Tech Michael Shroyer-USA TODAY Sports

The America East race is starting to get good. While we all watch Vermont make its bid for an undefeated regular conference season, Stony Brook, UMBC, and New Hampshire continue to fight for second place. Here are the takeaways from Saturday’s action.

UMBC beats UNH in double OT

A relatively even game between upper-tier America East teams went to double overtime, with UMBC ultimately taking down New Hampshire to pull even with the Wildcats in the standings. In the 105-103 victory, UMBC walked away with five players in double figures, with Jairus Lyles leading the way with 28 points and Rodney Elliot scoring 22. New Hampshire’s Tanner Leissner made his mark as the game’s high scorer with 36 points, converting on 11-17 from the field and 10-10 from the free throw line.

Vermont holds off Stony Brook to stay undefeated

Vermont seemed to have the game in the bag. The Catamounts held a 17-point lead in the first half and was up nine heading into the locker room. Stony Brook clawed its way back, tying the game at 50 about halfway through the second half, and made it a two point game with 5:24 left to go. It was Ernie Duncan’s standout performance with a career-high 22 points to lead the Catamounts to their current 8-0 conference record.

Second-half game changers

This has been a trending theme in America East basketball lately. For the most part, games have been relatively even in the first half, but it’s the second half that really makes the game. Binghamton recently defeated Stony Brook with a second-half comeback, and Hartford has become notorious for blowing any small difference to up to a 20-point loss. It’s gotten to the point where it almost doesn’t matter what the score is in the first half. It’s all up to who can make it through the final 20 minutes.

Weekend Scores:

UMBC 105 UNH 103
Vermont 71 Stony Brook 64
Albany 74 Hartford 61
UMass Lowell 97 Fisher College 73