PROVIDENCE, R.I.—Babson College sophomore Andrew Jaworski (Tolland, Conn.) poured in a career-high 32 points but Johnson & Wales University shot 6-of-7 from the floor in overtime to defeat the Beavers, 85-80, in non-conference men's basketball action on Sunday night inside the Wildcat Center.
Babson (0-1) dropped its season opener for the first time since 2007, while Johnson & Wales begins the season 1-0 for the first time since the 2011-12 campaign.
Jaworski was 10-of-21 from the floor and 12-of-14 at the free-throw in addition to finishing with nine rebounds, five assists and three blocks in 41 minutes. Junior Julian Alexis (Somerville, N.J.) had eight points and eight boards, senior Brandon Johnson (Mount Vernon, N.Y.) added eight points and five rebounds, and junior Shyheim Ulrickson (Topsham, Maine) contributed eight points and three steals for the Beavers. Classmate Frank Oftring (North Attleboro, Mass.) also pulled down a team-high nine boards in the loss.
Senior Randall Ferdinand (Pembroke Pines, Fla.) scored 26 points on 12-of-15 shooting, while junior Brian Hogan-Gary (Staten Island, N.Y.) finished with 22 points, 10 rebounds, nine assists, six steals and eight turnovers for the Wildcats. Sophomore Nate Patenaude (Smithfield, R.I.) scored nine of his 12 points in the extra session before fouling out.
The Green and White took its biggest lead of the game at 51-45 on a free throw by Johnson with 12:46 to play, but Johnson & Wales followed with a 7-0 run to go back in front just two minutes later. The lead changed hands seven times over the final 11 minutes of regulation with neither team leading by more than three.
Jaworski hit a tough pull-up jumper and made 1-of-2 free throws to give the Beavers a 67-64 advantage with 1:12 left, but Hogan-Gary made it a one-point game on the next possession and sophomore Justin Bullock's (Spring Valley, N.Y.) put back with 13 seconds left gave the Wildcats a one-point lead. Jaworksi drove the lane and was fouled with 0.8 seconds left and sank the second of two free throws to force overtime. Johnson & Wales never trailed in the extra session as Patenaude and Hogan-Gary combined for 14 points to help the hosts pull away.
Babson, which committed 11 of its 25 turnovers in the opening stanza, trailed by as many as nine on three occasions but used a 13-3 advantage at the free throw line to close within 37-33 at the break. The Beavers started the second half with a 12-4 run and took their first lead of the night with 15:27 to play after back-to-back hoops by Jaworski.
The Green and White finished with a 47-37 edge on the glass but went 3-of-22 from beyond the arc and struggled at the free throw line, shooting just 59.4 percent (19-of-32). The Wildcats outscored the Beavers 60-48 in the paint.
Both teams return to action on Wednesday at 7 p.m. as Babson travels to Lasell, while Johnson & Wales hosts Rhode Island College.
• The Beavers are now 1-2 all-time against Johnson & Wales.
• Babson had not gone to overtime in a season opener since 2008 when it won 90-88 at Tufts.
• Alexis made his first career start and sophomore Matt Pattyson (Piperville, Pa.) played a career-high 26 minutes off the bench in the loss.