With 6:45 remaining in the first half Blair hit a 3-pointer and put the Hatters up 22-20. It was a lead Stetson held on to until late in the second. At the 2:53 mark Mercer’s Brian Pfohl hit a layup to tie the score 71-71. Shaddean Aaron followed with a 3-pointer and the Bears found themselves up by three points equaling their largest lead of the night. What followed were two Stetson trips to the line sandwiched around a turnover by Aaron. A free throw by Blair and then two by Smith and the score was tied one more time at 74-74 with 1:23 on the clock.
Time wound down to six seconds when Blair hit a jumper from just inside the free throw line to give the Hatters a 76-74 lead. Mercer’s James Florence was able launch an off-balance 3-pointer at the buzzer that just missed and bounced off the back iron.
Smith led the Hatters with 19 shooting 7-for13 from the field, 2-for-3 from beyond the arc and 3-of-4 from the line. He was followed by the team’s leading scorer Blair (15.9 ppg) with 18 points. Junior forward Eric Diaz (
Tonight’s win was Stetson’s fourth in a row and 6th in the last eight games. It is the first time since head coach Derek Waugh took over the program in 2000-01 that the Hatters have started 4-1 in conference play.
Next up for Stetson is a non-conference rematch against