HAWKS HANG WITH OLD DOMINION; FALL, 66-56
Dec. 23, 2008
NORFOLK, Va. - Neal Pitt (Fort Washington, Md.) scored a game-high 19 and Keishawn Mayes (Warrenton, N.C.) had a double-double as the University of Maryland Eastern Shore gave Old Dominion a scare, 66-56, at the Ted Constant Convocation Center Monday.
Mayes tallied 14 points and 14 rebounds in the loss, the 24th consecutive defeat on the road for the Hawks (1-7). The Monarchs (7-3), who had Gerald Lee (16) and Ben Finney (14) in double figures, won their sixth straight.
UMES, which only dressed eight players due to injury and illness, trailed by just six points with 1:07 remaining before Finney hit four free throws down the stretch to stave off the pesky Hawks.
"We played a pretty good game but Old Dominion was just a bit stronger and a little bit more savvy than we were," UMES head coach Frankie Allen said. "I think that, all in all, for us to come down and play within 10 points probably helps us in terms of getting prepared for our upcoming MEAC games."
The Monarchs scored the first five points of the second half, opening a 41-26 lead on a 3-pointer by Keyon Carter and forced UMES into taking a 30-second timeout at the 1:44 mark.
The Hawks didn't quit, though, going on a 9-2 run over the next five minutes punctuated by a Sammy Obetoh (Brooklyn, N.Y.) follow-up dunk with 13:27 to play.
ODU built the lead back up to 13 with more than 10 minute gone, but UMES continued to whittle it down to six at 60-54 with 2:43 left. The Hawks would get no closer, scoring one hoop the rest of the way.
"To our guys' credit, we got down double digits early [in the second half], but they kept fighting back and the only thing you can ask your players is to give it everything they've got," said Allen. "I felt like we expended all that energy to come back and just didn't have enough to get over the hump."
The Hawks hung tough in the first half despite being outrebounded by a 24-18 margin.
UMES' Chris Conner Powell, Tenn.) tallied five consecutive points midway through the half to pull the Hawks to within three at 15-12. After an Old Dominion bucket, Jaime Boyer (Philadelphia, Pa.) drained a three from the left wing with eight minutes left in the half to cut it to a two-point lead.
Pitt then had three consecutive field goals to pull the Hawks even at 22 with five minutes to play.
The UMES momentum was erased quickly when ODU scored the game's next 10 points to open its largest lead of half, 32-33, before Obetoh stopped the bleeding with a fast-break layup with 1:32 left. Obetoh came off the bench to score seven points and grab two rebounds.
The Monarchs held a 35-26 advantage going into the break.
ODU shot 25-for-60 from the floor (41.7 percent) for the game, while UMES was 21-of-58 for 36.2 percent. The Hawks shot a season-best 42.1 percent from three and the Monarchs were 21.4 percent from downtown.
Old Dominion won the battle of the boards, 44-34, as Lee (nine), Finney and Kent Bazemore (eight) and Carter (seven) each had made solid contributions on the glass.
UMES returns to action Jan. 3 at Nebraska for a 2 p.m. tip.
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