The Hobart College basketball team raced out to a 20-point halftime time lead and held on for a 68-59 Liberty League win at Skidmore College this afternoon. Senior forward Matt Pebole led the way with game-highs of 20 points and 11 rebounds.
A 14-2 run early in the first half-capped by a Stefan Thompson layup-gave the Statesmen a 19-9 lead. The Thoroughbreds made it a 6-point game on a layup by Kyle Clark at the 6:13 mark, but Hobart finished the half with a 19-5 run. Pebole accounted for nine points during the surge. He and sophomore guard Joe Gibbons shared game-high honors with 13 points at the intermission.
Hobart shot 60 percent from the floor in the first half, making 3-of-5 from beyond the 3-point arc, and 3-for-3 from the free throw line. The Statesmen also outrebounded their hosts 24-7.
Hobart looked like a different team in the second half. The Statesmen made just five field goals after the break (none in the final eight minutes) and got outrebounded 16-15. Fortunately, three of the five field goals were from long range and Hobart made 7-of-9 from the charity stripe to keep Skidmore at bay.
Gerald O’Shea’s trey with 55 seconds to go trimmed the home team’s deficit to single digits, 66-57. After a Statesmen turnover, O’Shea converted a layup to make it a 7-point game, but that’s as close of his team got. Gibbons iced the victory with a pair of made free throws with nine seconds remaining.
Gibbons registered 15 points and seven rebounds and sophomore forward Richie Bonney added 13 points and five boards. Thompson chipped in 10 points and five assists.
Terron Victoria led Skidmore (11-6, 5-3) with 16 points, six rebounds, and four steals. O’Shea contributed 10 points and five assists.
The Statesmen (14-3, 7-1) will be back in action on Tuesday, Jan. 31, when they host RIT. Tipoff in Bristol Gym is scheduled for 8 p.m.