HAWKS FIGHT UPHILL BATTLE, LOSE CONFERENCE OPENER
Dec. 1, 2012
DOVER, DEL.--In its first conference contest of the season, the University of Maryland Eastern Shore lost to its Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference rival Delaware State 76-66 Saturday afternoon. UMES was led by Kyree Jones with 24 total points. The loss drops UMES to 0-7 on the season, and 0-1 in MEAC play. Jones was 6-of-11 (.545) from the field, and made 9-of-10 (.900) at the free-throw line. Teammate Ishaq Pitt posted 17 points, with 11 of those points coming in the second half. "We asked them to play tough, and they did," said head coach Frankie Allen. "These guys came out and did what you asked of them," Allen continued to say of his team.
Travis Trim and Dominique Cowell were included in Allen's comments. "Those guys played with a lot of heart." The Hawks Troy Snyder opened the game with a score in the paint. UMES would lead just twice in the game, and both times came in the opening five minutes.
Snyder posted a final of 13 points and eight rebounds. He contributed a game-high five steals for the Hawks. UMES would trail by as much as 13 points at the 3:43 mark in the first half, before closing the gap to a 29-23 differential with 42 seconds left to play.
Jones converted both free-throw attempts to pull UMES within six points, and was otherwise automatic from the charity stripe. Coach Allen remarked that, "We fell behind early and spent the rest of the game fighting an uphill battle." As a pendulum swings, so did the possible comeback opportunities for the Hawks.
Trailing by a single-digit entering halftime, and outscoring Delaware State 16-4 in the paint put the momentum in UMES' favor at intermission. However, out of the break UMES fell to 37-25 at 18:06 on a three-pointer by Delaware State. Then the Hawks fell behind by its largest margin of the game, 17 points (53-36), with 10:13 remaining in the game.
"Delaware State made big shots tonight," said Coach Allen. "We need to get ahead in points on our opponents, and stop trying to catch up." UMES would play catch-up for the remainder of the game, but cut the Delaware State lead significantly following a made three pointer by Louis Bell, layup by Snyder and converted free-throw by Jones.
UMES was again down by a single digit following a layup by Pitt at the 6:16 mark. Bell converted a free-throw to bring UMES within eight points (61-53), while Jones would later hit a three pointer for UMES to trail 61-56 with 4:06 left in the game.
That would be the closest the Hawks would come to tying or taking a lead. With less than four minutes in the game, Delaware State would increase its lead to double digits four times before the game was over.
UMES lost the points-in-the-paint battle 22-12, and was outrebounded 37-26 for the game. "They beat us inside and on the boards," Coach Allen said following the game.
The Hawks return to action Wednesday, December 5 when it travels to Maryland. Game time is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.