Eagles Miss on Last Second Shot, Fall to Elon
STATESBORO, Ga. Georgia Southern’s desperation 3-pointer at the buzzer missed left off the glass and the Eagles dropped a 57-54 Southern Conference decision to Elon on Thursday night (Feb. 5) at Hanner Fieldhouse. The Eagles (7-14 overall, 5-8 SoCon) lost their fourth straight.
Tyler Troupe (Gallatin, TN/Iowa Western CC) recorded his second career double-double with 14 points and 16 rebounds off the bench. His boards were not only a career-high, but also a team season-high.
Ben Drayton III (St. Marys/Camden County) hit a jumper in the lane with 3:52 remaining to give Georgia Southern a 54-52 lead. Brett James hit a runner in the lane to tie, then with two minutes left Adam Constantine was wide open in the lane and dunked home what would be the winning basket.
The Eagles missed three 3s’ in the final two minutes. Josh Bonney hit the second of two free throws and Drayton raced up court with three seconds left. He launched a shot from near midcourt to try sending the game into overtime but just missed.
“I thought our team gave a tremendous effort. We defended well, held them at 36 percent (shooting),” said head coach Jeff Price. “We had too many turnovers which turned out to be costly and I thought we got a little fatigued in the second half. I thought at the end of the game they looked like a team that had seniors and we looked like a team of freshmen... they (Elon) looked like the more experienced team down the stretch.”
The Eagles opened the game on a 14-2 run, with four different players scoring, forcing Elon to call a timeout six minutes into the game.
Elon staged a 20-9 run over the next 13 minutes to close the gap to one. When Troupe missed the front end of a 1-and-1 with 12 seconds left Elon got the rebound and drove down the court.
Anthony Marshall (Lake Worth, FL/Lake Worth) intercepted Devan Carter’s pass and as he was falling out-of-bounds, launched a half-court pass to Drayton. The freshman guard caught the pass and made a driving lay-in in the final second to give the Eagles a 25-22 halftime lead.
The Eagles made 40.9 percent from the field (9-22) while the Phoenix converted 24.2 percent (8-33). Virtually every other statistical category was even.
Coming off the bench, Troupe grabbed 10 of the Eagles’ 20 first half rebounds as he and Drayton scored six points each. Ola Atoyebi led all scorers with nine points.
Early in the second half both teams traded baskets. Bonney hit a 20-footer to give Elon (7-13, 4-8) its first lead of the game at 29-28, forcing coach Price to call timeout.
Troupe hit a pair of free throws to give GS a 36-33 lead. However, Elon responded with a 15-5 run. Chris Long hit a 3-pointer to make it a seven-point lead, the largest of the night.
On the next possession, Krzysztof Janiszewski (Dzierzoniow, Poland) grabbed an offensive rebound and kicked it out to Drayton who drained a 3’. Troupe made an off-handed lay-in, then Antonio Hanson (Fort Worth, TX/Independence CC) drained a 3-pointer to regain the lead.
Drayton joined Troupe in double-figures, scoring a game-high 17 points. Hanson added 11 points and three rebounds.
“I thought he (Tyler Troupe) played really well he was really aggressive...he was all over the glass and did a really nice job,” said Price.
The Eagles shot 40.8 percent for the game (20-49) and held Elon to 36.7 percent (22-60). Despite out-rebounding the Phoenix 40-35, nine more turnovers cost Georgia Southern.
James scored a team-high 15 points while Long and Atoyebi added 11 points each. Constantine grabbed 11 rebounds.
Georgia Southern closes out a three-game homestand and stretch of five games in 10 days - on Saturday night (Feb. 7) against UNC Greensboro. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.
- Category: Men's Basketball
- Published on Thursday, 05 February 2009 00:24