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Eagles Defeat Kennesaw State on Senior Night
FORT MYERS, Fla. – Playing in his final game inside Alico Arena, Delvin Franklin scored 12 points, and the Eagles knocked off the Kennesaw State Owls, 61-57. Kyle Marks led all scorers with 19, and Reggie Chambers added 12 for the Eagles.
After Derrick O’Neil put the Eagles on the board first, Kennesaw State went on a 7-0 run to take a 7-2 lead just over two minutes into the game. FGCU came back, and after Delvin Franklin knocked down the first of his two three-pointers, the Eagles held a 13-12 lead. A few minutes later, Franklin connected on a pair of free throws to put FGCU in front 18-16. Over the next minute and a half, the Owls went on a 10-0 run to take a 26-18 lead. KSU maintained a healthy margin until the closing minutes of the first half, when FGCU went on a 7-3 run to trim the lead down to four points, as the Owls took a 32-28 lead into halftime.
The Eagles jumped on the Owls at the onset of the second half, scoring the first six points to take a 34-32 lead. Jon-Michael Anderson knocked down a three to quickly grab the lead back for the Owls, just over two minutes into the half. With 13:54 left, Kyle Marks rejected an attempted layup from Spencer Dixon, and Marks ran the floor and threw down a tomahawk jam at the other end to give the Eagles a 40-39 lead. Kennesaw’s Kelvin McConnell hit a jumper a few seconds later to regain the lead for KSU, and the teams went back-and-forth for the next couple minutes, trading leads six times. With two minutes to play, Kennesaw held a slim 57-56 lead. FGCU’s Reggie Chambers drove into the lane and made a circus-shot layup to put the Eagles in front 58-57 with 1:52 to play. After McConnell missed a three for KSU, Reed Baker knocked down an 18-footer to put FGCU in front by three with 1:01 left. With about 30 seconds left, both Dixon and McConnell had good looks at the basket, but both came up short, and when Kyle Marks pulled down the rebound and hit one of two free throws, he sealed the victory for the Eagles, 61-57.
For the Owls (7-18, 3-13), Kelvin McConnell had a team-high 18 points on 7-15 shooting, including 4-11 from behind the arc. Kurtis Woods scored 11 points, pulled down 4 rebounds, and grabbed 3 steals. Jon-Michael Nickerson added 10 points and a team-high 7 boards. Spencer Dixon dished out a game-high 5 assists, but only scored 3 points on 1-6 shooting.
For the Eagles (11-18, 7-11), Kyle Marks had a game-high 19 points, including 9-10 from the free throw line, and pulled down 6 rebounds. Reggie Chambers and Delvin Franklin each added 12 points, and Derrick O’Neil chipped in with 8 points, a game-high 9 rebounds, and a team-high 4 assists.
The Eagles will close out the 2008-09 season on the road with a pair of games in Jacksonville later this week. FGCU will travel to UNF on Thursday night for a game at 7:30 PM, and the Eagles will close out the season at Jacksonville University on Saturday at 4:15 PM. Both games can be seen on Asun.tv.