HAWKS BITTEN BY RATTLERS IN ONE-POINT HEART-BREAKER
Jan. 27, 2013
TALLAHASSEE, Fla.--The University of Maryland Eastern Shore battled from being down 10 points in the second half to trailing by one with less than a minute remaining in the game. UMES had the ball with seconds remaining on the clock, but the Hawks would miss its chance to win and lose to Florida A&M 55-54 Saturday.
Kevin Mays led all scorers with 20 points, and finished with 13 rebounds for the Hawks. Only Troy Snyder finished with more boards (15), which was a game-high. UMES won the battle of the boards 57-35, a season-high for the Hawks.
The Hawks trailed by just three points (28-25) entering halftime time, and returned in the second half to outscore Florida A&M 29-27. UMES shot a lowly 30-percent from the field for the game, but defensively held FAMU from scoring for more than five minutes in the second half.
In that time, UMES would tally 15 points, notching 10 consecutive points at the free-throw line. The Hawks finished 18-of-31 (.581) at the line, with Mays making 8-of-12 (.667).
The first half was a battle for UMES, but it put together a string of offensive plays and defensive stops to cut into a Rattlers eight-point lead. A tip-in layup by Olatunji Kosile with 7:38 remaining in the first half gave the Hawks a one-point advantage. Kosile finished with seven points for UMES. Troy Snyder followed up Kosile's play with a layup of his own, giving UMES a slightly larger lead.
By 3:17 in the first half the game was tied for the fifth time of the contest. The score was tied a total of seven times, while the lead changed eight times. FAMU returned to the court and pushed its three-point halftime lead to as much as 10 points (46-36) with 14:26 remaining in the game.
Within a minute a UMES had cut the lead to six points on a Mays jumper. By the 7:49 mark Mays had brought the Hawks within three points (47-44). It would be during this stretch in the second half that UMES put together its string of made free throws.
Kosile would break the free-throw streak with a layup, and the Hawks down four points (55-51). Ishaq Pitt, who finished with seven points, hit 1-of-2 free throws in the last two minutes, and converted a jumper to bring UMES within one-point of FAMU.
Just 20 seconds remained in the game, and UMES would force the Rattlers to turn the ball over. Holding for the last shot, Mays would shoot from the right-side block, the ball rimmed out to Snyder's hands, and eventually ends up being caught in a scuffle between the two teams.
And just as Louis Bell bent to retrieve the ball and shoot, the horn rang out ending regulation play. UMES will quickly put this loss behind and look forward to facing Bethune-Cookman on January 28.