UMES OUTLASTS FAMU, 87-85, IN DOUBLE OT TO OPEN MEAC TOURNEY
March 8, 2011
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - It took double overtime, but the University of Maryland Eastern Shore men's basketball team prevailed, 87-85, over Florida A&M University Tuesday evening in the opening round of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Tournament at the Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum.
The Rattlers took a four-point lead with less than one minute remaining in the first overtime before redshirt junior Hillary Haley (Oxon Hill, Md.) hit a free throw and a huge 3-pointer to send the game into double overtime.
The Hawks went 3-for-3 from field goal range and 5-for-8 from the free throw line in the second overtime to take the win. Senior Kevin White (Brooklyn, N.Y.) and Haley combined for 10 points to give UMES the advantage.
"This is a tremendous win for us, probably one of the best wins I've ever been associated with in my career," stated head coach Frankie Allen. "I couldn't be more proud of this team and their effort as they were not to be denied tonight."
Haley recorded his fifth double double of the season with 17 points and ten rebounds.
"Hillary is our go-to guy," Allen said. "He's not just a big scorer, he also had ten rebounds on the night and went after the ball."
"I struggled all game with my jump shot, but I figured a good shooter shoots so I had to keep putting it up," stated Haley.
White tallied game-highs of 22 points and seven assists. All of his points came in the second half and overtime periods of the game.
"Kevin is our leader, we want the ball in his hands and to make the right decisions," commented Allen. "He really orchestrated our offense and did a great job of managing the game."
"We really dug down deep for this win," remarked White. "We just wanted it, we're not ready to pack up and go home."
The tone was set in the first half as FAMU (12-20), the Number 7 seed, took an early five-point lead, only to have the Hawks respond and take a 10-point lead at the 2:54 mark.
The Rattlers closed the half with a spurt to get within three at 30-27 at intermission.
The second half was a test of wills and determination as both teams made runs. The Hawks maintained the advantage through most of the second half and appeared to have some breathing room when Haley and White helped UMES forge to a 55-47 lead with 6:24 remaining.
FAMU then went on an 11-3 run, spurred by the scoring of Yannick Crowder and Avery Moore. A straight away 3-pointer from Moore finished off the run and gave the Rattlers a 58-57 lead at 3:40.
From that point, the two teams traded baskets. The Hawks led, 66-64, with just 21 seconds remaining, but a jumper from Moore in the lane tied the game and sent things into the first overtime.
Fatigue began to set in for both teams, as the game became a combination of players fouling out and a parade to the foul line. Seven players fouled out of the game, including four UMES players.
With the entire front line on the bench, Allen went to a smaller lineup and moved Haley from the wing to the block. The strategy paid off as Haley came up with big plays and White making his mark at the free throw line.
"The bench was getting thin and we ended up playing four guards at the end," Allen commented. "This didn't stop us, you can't measure the size of these guys' hearts."
A free throw by Haley made it a two-possession game at 85-79 with 14 seconds remaining but the Rattlers would not quit. Moore nailed a 3-pointer with 9.6 but junior Dishawn Bradshaw (Baltimore, Md.) followed with two free throws to make it 87-82. Moore ended the scoring at the buzzer with another trey.
Obame Obame contributed 12 points and seven rebounds while junior Tyler Hines (Sicklerville, N.J.) posted 11 points and nine rebounds. Junior Diyaaldin Kelley (Philadelphia, Pa.) also neared a double double with nine points and ten rebounds.
Moore led FAMU with 21 points while Larry Jackson posted a double double with 16 points and 11 rebounds.
The Hawks (9-21), the Number 10 seed, advance to the quarterfinal round where they will play Hampton, the Number 2 seed on Wednesday at 9:30 p.m.
Portions of this release courtesy of MEAC Media Relations