Sharpshooting Hawks Fly by Tigers in Emerald Coast Classic
Nov. 24, 2017

Final Stats

NICEVILLE, Florida -

Behind hot shooting and an early second half surge, Maryland Eastern Shore mens basketball established control, holding off a late Jackson State run to win 66-63 on Friday at The Arena at Northwest Florida State College.

The Hawks (2-3) now move onto the fifth-place game in the Emerald Coast Classic tomorrow, where they will meet Tennessee Tech. The Golden Eagles knocked off Omaha 86-85 earlier in the day. The teams will tip at 1:30 p.m. EST.

I was very proud of the fight our guys gave, said Hawks head coach Bobby Collins after the win. Thats a very talented basketball team we played, but today the ball just fell our way, and I thought we were very deserving of that.

Down 45-43 with 15:15 to play, The Shore evened things up behind an Ahmad Frost (Cincinnati, Ohio) layup. Frost was fouled on the play and missed the free throw but tipped out his own rebound to teammate Logan McIntosh (Atlanta, Georgia), who drove in and drew his own foul before hitting a pair of shots to put his team up 47-45 at the 14:47 mark.

After a LeAndre Thomas (St. Petersburg, Florida) block on the defensive end, Cameron Bacote (Norfolk, Virginia) pushed it in transition and found an open Tyler Jones (Atlantic City, New Jersey) for a layup. Bacote then ripped down a board at the other end and again found Jones, who drained a three from straightaway to make it 52-45 with 13:41 to play, capping a 9-0 run over just over a minute.



The Hawks kept the Tigers (1-4) at an arms length for most of the rest of the second half. Colen Gaynors (Berlin, Maryland) three at the 8:48 mark made it 57-49 and capped a spectacular day for Gaynor. The freshman led the Hawks with a career-high 15 points on a perfect 5-for-5 from long range.

I was proud to see Colen shoot the ball as well as he shot the ball, said Collins of his local standouts career game. He was really in the dumps earlier, Ive been riding him pretty hard, but he really stepped up and did some things today.

Eastern Shore led by as many as nine with five minutes to go, but Jackson State hung around thanks to several missed Hawk free throws down the stretch. Chace Franklins layup with 37 seconds to go got the Tigers within one possession at 64-61, and a botched inbound play gave possession right back to JSU. Franklin immediately took a deep three from the wing that hit nothing but air. Jeremiah Jefferson got the offensive rebound and scrambled for the left corner, but his three clanged off the bottom of the iron and into Jones hands. Jones hit 1-of-2 ensuing free throws to make it a two-possession game and then hit another after a JSU miss with two seconds left. Jackson State hit a shot at the buzzer to give the game its final margin.

Jones recorded his first career double-double on the afternoon, scoring 13 points and pulling down 11 rebounds. McIntosh played 37 minutes in his return to the lineup after a back injury, contributing 10 points, three boards, three assists, and two steals, in addition to a calming hand in the backcourt.

It was great having Logan McIntosh back to give us some stability, said Collins. He broke the defense down and was finding the right guys all day. He does a lot for us.

Eastern Shore fell behind by as many as nine in the first half, trailing 29-20 with 5:44 to play. A Jones three within that minute started the comeback, then Gaynor hit back-to-back treys from the left corner to make it 31-29. JSU responded with a Maurice Rivers three-point play, but Gaynors hot hand again connected to make it 34-32 with 3:23 before the break. Down 37-32 inside of two minutes to go, Bacote spotted up from deep on the right wing for three, and McIntosh went up for a rebound and bobbed through the defense for a coast-to-coast layup, tying things at 37-37 and giving the Hawks all the momentum going into the locker room.

Jefferson led the Tigers with 20 points on 8-of-18 shooting, while Franklin added 18 of his own.

The Hawks lit up the scoreboard all afternoon, shooting 50 percent (19-for-38) from the floor and hitting 11-of-18 from downtown, including 9-of-12 threes in the first half.

Eastern Shore wraps up play in the Emerald Coast Classic on Saturday afternoon against Tennessee Tech. Tip from The Arena at Northwest Florida State College is set for 1:30 p.m. EST. Saturday’s game will be broadcast locally on flagship radio station Fox Sports 960 AM WTGM and online at Pregame coverage starts at 1:15 p.m. with Will DeBoer on the call for The Shore Sports Network.

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