Colleges

WBB: Free Throws Key St. Aug To Sixth Consecutive Win

Posted February 3, 2013

— Saint Augustine’s University put on a three-point shooting display against Fayetteville State University, but free throws catapulted the Falcons to their sixth straight win on Saturday, Feb. 2, 2013.

Senior guard Tyquan Stroman (Poughkeepsie, N.Y.) scored 19 points and pulled down 10 rebounds and the Falcons relied on free throws late to knock off the Broncos 65-55 in a CIAA men's basketball game at Capel Arena. The contest was televised on Bounce TV by the Urban Sports & Entertainment Group.

The victory solidified the Falcons’ grip on first place in the Southern Division. Coupled with Winston-Salem State’s loss to Livingstone, the Falcons hold a two-game lead in the division with a 5-0 mark. They are now 15-6 overall including an 8-3 mark in the CIAA. The 15 wins surpass their victory total from last season.

The loss was the seventh straight for the Broncos, who fell to 0-5 in the Southern Division. Their overall record is 8-12 overall and 3-8 in the CIAA.

Free throws keyed the Falcons in their latest win. They connected on 16 of 20 free-throw attempts for 80 percent while the Broncos were 11 of 23 for 48 percent. The Falcons made 11 of 13 free throws in the final nine minutes to take command after trailing 53-52.

“I told [the players] after the game, I’ll take 80 percent from the free-throw line anytime,” St. Aug Head Coach Lonnie Blow, Jr. said.

Their success from the charity stripe sparked a 13-2 game-ending run for the Falcons, who only scored one field goal in the last nine minutes. While the Falcons were making free throws during that stretch, the Broncos were misfiring from long range, going 0 for 7 from behind the three-point arc. They were held to one basket during the Falcons’ late spurt.

The Falcons rallied after the Broncos came back from an eight-point second half deficit to take the one-point lead. Losing 37-32 at halftime, the Falcons opened the second half on a 17-4 run for a 49-41 lead.

For the Falcons, senior guard Percy Woods (Washington, D .C.) added 11 points and sophomore center Jon Crawley (Richmond, Va.) contributed eight points and seven rebounds off the bench. Senior guard/forward Jon Kindred (Raleigh, N.C.) had seven points and four rebounds and freshman forward Joel Watson (Smithfield, N.C.) scored six points on 2 of 2 shooting in reserve roles.

For the Broncos, they were led by Anthony Shelton with 19 points. Tyrell Tate added 13 points but no other Bronco scored more than five points.

Three-point shooting kept the Falcons in the game. They canned 9 of 20 attempts for 45 percent including 6 of 10 in first half when they fell behind by five points at halftime. The nine treys tied a season-high for the Falcons. Stroman led the three-point shooting barrage for the Falcons, making 4 of 7 threes. Woods was 2 of 3 behind the arc and senior guard Nick Chamblee (Hampton, Va.) was 2 of 4.

The first four buckets for the Falcons were threes. They led 12-8, but the Broncos gained the lead in the first half with some hot three-point shooting of their own (4 of 7). Stroman led the Falcons in the first half with 14 points including 4 of 5 three-pointers.

“I thought the first half we were out of sorts in the first half,” Blow said. “I don’t know if it was the game being on television or what. We had unforced errors and didn’t defend great. It may have been nerves. In the second half, we made a few adjustments and the guys settled down.
“We were fortunate to be down five at the half, but Stroman’s 14 points kept us in there.”

The Broncos were 4 of 7 from behind the arc in the first half but cooled off in the second half, hitting only 2 of 13 threes. The Falcons were off as well from long distance in the second half, hitting only 3 of 10 threes, but canned their free throws to come away with the win in the televised contest. They outscored the Broncos 33-18 in the second half.

“We did a really nice job of making clutch free throws,” Blow said. “Several guys stepped up there and knocked them down.”

The Falcons play again next Saturday when they visit nationally-ranked Winston-Salem State University in a huge CIAA contest at the Gaines Center in Winston-Salem, N.C. Game time is 7:30 p.m. In the first meeting, the Falcons got the best of the Rams 63-61 in Raleigh, N.C., on Jan. 19.

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