HAWKS PLAY EVEN WITH HOYAS IN 2nd HALF; FALL 68-49
Thomas Rivera dished out four assists in the loss to Georgetown.
Dec. 1, 2015

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WASHINGTON, D.C. - Despite trailing by 18 points at the break on Tuesday night against Georgetown, the University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES) managed to hang around in the second half cutting the lead down to 11 before falling 68-49.

The Hawks (1-5) turned the ball over 14 times in the first half, but turned the tables on the Hoyas in the second half ratcheting up the pressure and forcing 10 Georgetown turnovers after the break.

But in the end D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera's 30 points on 10-of-16 shooting was too much to overcome. "They did a very good job making shots," Hawks coach Bobby Collins said. "Smith-Rivera was a man among boys tonight. He scored 30 points and he ran the team. He was definitely the foundation of their success tonight."

Collins said Smith-Rivera seemed to end up with the ball in his hands every time the Hoyas needed a big basket or a bail out with the shot clock running down.

Georgetown (3-3) led 38-20 at the half thanks in part to 20 points off 14 Hawks turnovers and Smith-Rivera's 17 first half points.

The Hawks trapped some on defense, played straight zone, switched to man, played full court pressure and did everything they could to keep the Hoyas out of the rhythm of their offense.

"With the Princeton offense that they run they pick a lot of people apart," Collins said. "They even picked Duke apart. Duke is one of the best defensive teams in the country. We knew we had to keep switching our defenses to keep them off balance."

With 12 minutes left in the game, the Hawks still trailed by 21 points, 46-25, but they turned up the pressure on Georgetown, which missed three straight shots and turned the ball over.

UMES went on a 12-2 run over a span of 2:30 and cut the lead the 48-37 on a free throw from senior guard Devin Martin (Baltimore, Maryland) with 9:03 to play in the game.

A layup by Dominique Elliott (Savannah, Georgia) kept UMES within 11 at 50-39 with 7:02 remaining, but the Hoyas began to pull away again after that.

"It definitely wore us down," Collins said of the second half effort. "There were six minutes to go and we came back within 11. I had to sub and they got to the basket, got to the free throw line and made their free throws."

Sophomore guard Ryan Andino (Fort Lauderdale, Florida) led all Hawks with 16 points off the bench -- including 4-of-5 from behind the arc. Martin scored 12 in 34 minutes and Elliott put up 11 in 36 minutes before fouling out.

"We are still trying to find out who we are," Collins said. "Once we found that rhythm and played with the effort we like to play with, we can be a pretty good team. The second half made us realize we can play with anybody.

"We just have to trust each other and trust the coaches."

The Hawks will next hit the road for a pair of Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference games in the Tar Heel state as they tangle with North Carolina Central at 4 p.m. on Dec. 5 and North Carolina A&T on Dec. 7 at 7:30.

Both games can be heard locally on Fox Sports Radio 960 AM WTGM or on www.umeshawks.com.

 

 

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