BRUNSWICK — Chris Petzy scored 33 points to lead St. Joseph’s College to a 70-68 victory against Bowdoin in a men’s basketball game Tuesday night at Morrell Gymnasium.

Petzy scored 21 of his game-high total from 3-point distance after connecting just once in a season-opening 57-47 victory against the University of Maine at Farmington last Wednesday.

“I think it was kind of first-game jitters,” Petzy said of his team’s struggles in the opener. “We were a little nervous and hesitant on offense (last week) and tonight we felt a little more confident and comfortable.”

The Monks scored seven times from outside the arc in the opening half compared to a total of four in the opener.

The improved shooting led the Monks to a 39-34 halftime lead in a relatively even first half. Neither team was able to open distance until St. Joseph’s went on a 13-4 run to grab a 30-22 lead with eight minutes left in the half.

Petzy sparked the spurt with 11 of the 13 points, including hitting three times from 3-point range. The Monks got it up to 39-29 with 21/2 minutes left in the half, the biggest advantage by either team in the half, before Bowdoin scored the final five points to make it 39-34 at the break.

Petzy had a game-high 19 points in the first half, including 5 of 7 on 3-pointers.

Ryan O’Connell led Bowdoin with 15 points in the half.

St. Joseph’s increased its lead in the opening six minutes of the second half, using a 13-4 run to increase its lead to 52-40.

“We’ve had some great games here the last three or four times,” said St. Joseph’s Coach Rob Sanicola, who singled out both Tom Ray and James Philbrook for their defense.

“Even though we got ahead we knew it was going to come down to one or two possessions, and we had to pay attention to some of the little details that we talk about every day. We had some guys today that wouldn’t show up in the scorebook but they showed up in the defensive end.”

Bowdoin (2-1) answered the Monks’ early second-half surge with one of its own. The run started and ended on 3-point baskets by Bryan Hurley, and resulted in the Polar Bears closing within one with 4:06 left.

“I was happy with how we battled back when we got down,” said Bowdoin Coach Tim Gilbride.

“They are a very well-coached team and very skilled team, so they are a tough team to come back on because they execute so well and they shoot so well. Every time you battle and battle, and then somebody gets a good play, a 3(-pointer) or free throws.”

The closing stretch saw the Monks inch back up by six points as the clock moved toward the final minute.

But Bowdoin kept the heat on, and 3-pointers by Andrew Madlinger and Justin Nowell left the Polar Bears down by one with 23.6 seconds remaining.

That was as close as they would get. Petzy followed by draining 1 of 2 free throws and giving the Monks a 70-68 lead.

“We thought we were a little more athletic and it just came down to who wanted it more,” Petzy said. “I think we came in here and we just really wanted to go into the break on a win.”

O’Connell finished with 19 points and Will Hanley collected a game-high 11 rebounds for the Polar Bears.