SWARTHMORE, Pa. – Dickinson defeated Franklin & Marshall 70-64 in the semifinal of the Centennial Conference Championship Friday evening. The Red Devils improved to 16-10 and will face the winner of Swarthmore and Ursinus in tomorrow evening's championship game. The Diplomats end their season at 18-8.
F&M took an early 5-1 lead three minutes into the game and the Red Devils came within three, 11-8, at 13:31. The Diplomats netted 10 straight to go ahead 21-8 before Dickinson went on a 16-6 run over the next seven minutes to make it a three-point game, 27-24, with 2:34 left until the break. The teams exchanged points down the stretch with the Diplomats leading 32-28 at halftime.
The Diplomats outscored Dickinson 9-2 to open the second and went up 41-30 at 17:27. F&M maintained at least a seven-point edge over the next five minutes and led by 11, 47-36, with a little less than 13 minutes remaining in the game. Then Dickinson hit another gear. The Red Devils went on a 15-0 run over the ensuing five minutes to take their first lead of the game, 51-47, at 8:05.
Jared Wright hit a three to bring F&M within a point, but Dickinson quickly went back up five. Wright hit two from the stripe to bring F&M within three before Dickinson netted four straight and took a seven-point edge, 60-43, at 3:06. The Diplomats answered with a 7-0 spurt with five points from Brandon Federici and tied the game at 60-60, with 2:15 remaining in the game. However, the Red Devils countered with a 7-0 run of their own to lead 67-60 with 18 ticks on the clock and were able to run out the clock to secure the win.
Federici and Matthew Tate both scored 15 points to lead the Diplomats. Wright netted 10 while Ignas Slyka and J.C. McGrath both chipped in seven. McGrath added a game-high 13 rebounds and Slyka grabbed seven boards for the Diplomats.
Justus Melton led all scorers and the Red Devils with 19 points and Elijah Wright chipped in 11.
Dickinson outshot F&M 45-38-percent and held a slight 39-35 edge on the glass.