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McGonagill guides men's basketball to victory

Maia ’15 and Hobbie ’17 also scored in double-digits to lead Bruno over the Pioneers on the road

Bruno downed Sacred Heart University 85-73 on the road Saturday. The Bears (2-1) were led by Sean McGonagill ’14, who netted 23 points against the Pioneers (0-3) and snagged the game and a career-high five steals. The guard currently leads the Ivy League with an average 22 points per game.

For the past three seasons, McGonagill has run the Bears’ offense from the point guard position. But this year Head Coach Mike Martin ’04 is experimenting with moving McGonagill off the ball to create more open looks, and the coach said he has been pleased with how the transition has played out.

“So far, so good,” Martin said. “He still has the ball in his hands an awful lot, and we want him to make as many plays as possible for us, but I think as far as not having to face that same pressure for 40 minutes and making shots — it’s been good.”

Raphael Maia ’15 shot 5 of 8 from the field and connected on 6 of 7 free throws to net 16 points. The forward also pulled down a game-high nine rebounds.

First-year guard Norman Hobbie ’17 scored 14 points in a breakout performance, hitting an impressive 4 of 5 from behind the arc and 5 of 6 from the field.

“He shot the ball really well,” Martin said. “We think if he gets open shots they’re going to go in, so we just need to continue to work on the rest of his game.”

“He was confident, and he came in ready to shoot. He knocked down some big shots for us early in the game, and that’s really what we needed from him,” McGonagill said. “He’s an unbelievable shooter and we’re looking for him to continue to play well for us.”

The Bears delivered a balanced offensive attack, with five players reaching double digits. In Brown’s two opening games against Binghampton University and Providence College, only two and three players achieved double figures, respectively. But the squad had a hot hand against Sacred Heart, shooting 56 percent from the field and 54 percent from three-point range.

“We had good balance,” Martin said. “We had some guys step up that hadn’t had big scoring games thus far.”

“We were just working the ball around well. We made an effort to make the extra passes, particularly into our big guys for easy lay ups,” McGonagill said. “It was just unselfish play.”

The Bears continue their stretch on the road with a game Tuesday at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, marking the first time ever Brown’s program will face off against the River Hawks.

“We’ve seen them on film, so it’s just like anything else,” Martin said. “We’re watching a ton of film … to get ready for what they’re going to do offensively and defensively.”

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