(8-9, 4-3 A-Sun)
(8-10, 3-3 A-Sun)
1/14/2012 | Nashville, TN - Allen Arena | Attendance: 2131
|Stats at a Glance||FGCU||LIP|
|3P FG Percentage||.250
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – After erasing a 13-point second half lead to force its second overtime game in the last week, FGCU hit 8-of-12 free throws in the final 70 seconds of the extra frame and got four consecutive stops to pull away for a 84-80 Atlantic Sun win at Lipscomb Saturday night at Allen Arena.
Five players reached double figures for the second straight game, as the Eagles picked up their second straight A-Sun road win en route to improving to 4-3 in league play. FGCU is now 8-9 on the season and will look for its first-ever three-game A-Sun road win streak on Monday when it visits Belmont.
Playing its first home game since Dec. 6 on its newly-renovated surface, Lipscomb falls to 8-10 on the year and 3-3 in the A-Sun. FGCU’s win snapped a four-game losing streak against the Bison.
Junior Sherwood Brown (Orlando, Fla./Olympia HS) led the five double figure scorers for the Green and Blue with 16 points and eight rebounds off the pine, marking the ninth time this season the bench has supplied the leading scorer.
One of the catalysts in the overtime, freshman point guard Brett Comer (Winter Park, Fla./Winter Park HS) knocked down 6-of-8 free throws in the extra frame and helped the Eagles go the final 8:16 without a turnover, including the entire OT period. Comer finished with 15 points, six rebounds and four assists.
FGCU was able to overcome a 42 percent (32-77) night from the field thanks to 19 offensive rebounds that helped build a final 53-40 edge on the backboard. Freshman Bernard Thompson’s (Conyers, Ga./Rockdale County HS) season-high 12 rebounds were coupled with 10 points for his first career double-double. Thompson, sophomore Chase Fieler (Parkersburg, W. Va./Parkersburg South HS) and Brown each had four offensive boards to lead to 40 points in the paint and 19 second chances points.
Five of the game’s 16 lead changes came in overtime where both teams were converting on the offensive end in the first three minutes. Neither team could put together back-to-back stops and a three-pointer by Thompson followed by an answer three by Lipscomb’s Jordan Burgason gave the home team a 78-77 lead with 2:27 left.
FGCU then regained the lead for good by getting to the free throw line and stopping the Bison four straight trips down the floor. Comer knocked down five consecutive free throws and 5-of-6 overall, and Lipscomb didn’t score a point over a critical two-minute stretch as the Eagles built an 83-78 lead with just 12 seconds left.
Burgason scored 18 points on 4-of-7 from three-point land to lead all scorers. As a team, Lipscomb shot 12-of-27 from deep, but was just 10-of-21 at the charity stripe. Jacob Arnett’s four three-pointers helped him finish with 16 points, while the Bison’s open looks from three came on great passing that featured 20 assists on 29 made baskets.
Out of Fieler’s 12 points, six came on put-backs in the final minutes of regulation, while the Parkersburg, W. Va. product also added seven rebounds. Freshman Dante Holmes (Baltimore, Md./St. Frances/Oldsmar Christian) managed to score 11 points in a foul-plagued 19 minutes.
FGCU opened the game by hitting its first five shots from the field to jump out to a 12-7 lead before the first media timeout. A three-pointer on the opening possession by Thompson and a trifecta from Comer highlighted the hot offensive start that saw the Eagles score on five of its first seven possessions.
The next six minutes weren’t as kind to the Eagles, as Lipscomb worked its way to its first lead of the game and eventually took a 21-16 lead with 8:59 on the clock, forcing FGCU to call a timeout.
Enfield turned to the A-Sun’s leading three-point shooter by percentage in Christophe Varidel (Versoix, Switzerland/Worcester Academy) out of the timeout and the Versoix, Switzerland product responded with a three-pointer from the top of the key to make it 21-19 and jump start the Eagles.
FGCU was tough on the defensive end over the final eight minutes, limiting the Bison to just eight points, while turning offensive rebounds and Lipscomb turnovers into points for a 33-29 lead at the break. Lipscomb made just 3-of-15 from the field over the final eight minutes, while the Eagles’ last 11 points came via an offensive rebound or LU turnover.
Lipscomb’s offensive woes didn’t carry over into the second half, as it doubled-up FGCU, 34-17, in the first 11 minutes to take the largest lead of the game (13), at 63-50.
The Eagles quickly battled back, though, going on an 11-0 run that spanned the next 5:37 and cut the deficit to 63-61.
A dunk by Fieler at the 2:04 mark tied the game at 65-65 and after a pair of free throws by Lipscomb, the Eagles took their first lead since the opening minutes of half when redshirt Eddie Murray (Fort Myers, Fla./Bishop Verot HS) drilled a three-pointer from the left wing with 1:21 left to make it 68-67.
The FGCU lead lasted all of 24 seconds until Burgason drilled a jumper from a step inside the three-point line to give the lead back to the home team, 69-68. Lipscomb’s lead stood just seven seconds, as Comer took the in-bound pass and raced up the court for a layup to make it 70-69.
Lipscomb’s Justin Glenn hit the second of two free throws to tie the game at 70-70, giving the ball back to FGCU for the final shot. After a timeout with 20 seconds left, Comer drove the lane and got the ball to Fieler on the left block where his shot was too strong, and the put-back by Brown was just wide.