Philadelphia, PA – Graduate forward Zeke Upshaw led Hofstra with 20 points, but Frantz Massenat had a game-high 24 points along with seven assists and keyed a crucial 10-0 second half run as Drexel defeated Hofstra, 74-63, on Sunday evening at the Daskalakis Athletic Center.
The loss drops Hofstra’s record to 8-19 overall and 4-8 in Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) play. Drexel improves to 14-11 and 6-6 in conference action with the win. The Dragons swept the season series from the Pride as they won 77-74 in Hempstead back on January 29.
The first six-plus minutes of the opening half would be a back and forth affair as a three-pointer from Upshaw knotted the game at 11 with 13:45 showing on the clock.
Drexel would take its first significant lead of the contest at that point as the Dragons used a 9-3 run to lead 20-14 with 9:08 left before intermission following a layup from Massenat.
A three-pointer from freshman guard Chris Jenkins would allow the Pride to close the gap to three, 26-23, with 2:57 to play in the opening stanza, but Drexel scored six of the final eight points in the half to lead 32-25 at the break.
Drexel pushed its lead to double digits on a pair of occasions early in the second stanza, including at 37-27 following a basket from Dartaye Ruffin with 17:54 left in regulation.
Hofstra slowly chipped away at the deficit and a layup from sophomore forward Jordan Allen followed by a three-pointer from Jenkins at the 15:14 mark would allow the Pride to close to within 40-37.
After the squads exchanged buckets, Hofstra would once again trail by just three, 47-44, as Upshaw hit one of two free throws for the Pride with 11:46 to play.
The Dragons would take control at that point, though, as Chris Fouch drained a three-pointer to kick-start a 10-0 Drexel run that gave the home team a 57-44 lead with 8:39 to play in the second half.
Hofstra would be unable to get the deficit under double digits the rest of the way as Drexel continued to stay hot from beyond the arc, hitting on 7-10 in the final 20 minutes to pull away late for the victory.
Fouch added 16 points for Drexel, with Rodney Williams chipping in with 11 points and seven rebounds. Ruffin added 10 points and eight rebounds.
Hofstra returns to action on Wednesday when it hosts Delaware at 7 p.m. That game will start a regular-season ending four-game stretch that will see the Pride play three of its final four games at the Mack Sports Complex. For ticket information call (516) HOF-TIXX or visit GoHofstra.com/tix.