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Mercer takes out Florida Gulf Coast for Atlantic Sun crown

Fort Myers, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - For Mercer, revenge is sweet.

Langston Hall and Anthony White Jr. each scored 15 points as the Bears held off late-charging Florida Gulf Coast 68-60 to capture the Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament title and book their first trip to the NCAA Tournament in 29 years.

The game was a rematch of last year's final, won by Florida Gulf Coast on Mercer's home floor.

Mercer returned the favor on Sunday, ending the Eagles' 12-game home winning streak and their hopes of another storybook run in the NCAA Tournament. FGCU advanced to the Sweet 16 as a No. 15 seed, knocking off both Georgetown and San Diego State.

The Bears (26-8), who will join the Southern Conference next season, got 13 points from Daniel Coursey.

Brett Comer and Bernard Thompson scored 14 points apiece for an Eagles (22-12) team that fell behind by 18 in the first half and nearly climbed out of the hole.

The start to the game was delayed due to a power problem at Alico Arena, where FGCU had won 17 straight against A-Sun teams.

The issue was a harbinger of the Eagles' flickering offense in the first half.

FGCU shot 20.8 percent (5-of-24) and Mercer seized control behind a 20-2 run.

The Bears were cold shooting to begin the second half, missing 11-of-12 from the floor, and the Eagles chipped away at the deficit.

They pulled to within 43-42 on a Chase Fieler layup with 8:50 remaining, but couldn't move ahead. FGCU held the lead only once in the game, after Thompson opened the scoring with a free throw.

Mercer responded with a 7-0 run to create a little distance.

FGCU continued to hang around, with a Thompson layup closing the gap to 59-56 with 2:29 to play. Eric McKnight was fouled on the play, but missed both free throws for the Eagles.

Hall then hit a pullup jumper and Coursey sank two free throws to make it 63-56 with one minute left.

Game Notes

FGCU became the fourth team to reach the A-Sun title game three straight years ... Both teams went 14-4 to share the regular-season league title, but FGCU won the tiebreaker for the top seed ... Thompson became the Eagles' all-time leading scorer with 1,379 points. He passed Ryan Hopkins, who had 1,367 points from 2002-05 ... Comer registered five assists to tie Bryan Crislip (2002-05) for the most in school history with 606.

03/09 17:58:19 ET

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Scoreboard
MLB
6th
KAN 3
SFG 2
 
Final
ORL 89
HOU 90
Final
BOS 100
BRK 86
Final
NYK 103
WAS 100
4th
MEM 90
CLE 83
 
Final
MIL 91
MIN 110
 
4th
SAN 74
ATL 95
 
1st
LAL 14
POR 16
 
10:30pm Tonight
LAC
PHO
 
7:00pm Tonight
OTT 0
TOR 0
3rd
PIT 2
PHI 4
 
1st Intermission
EDM 1
WAS 1
 
10:30pm Tonight
ANA
BUF