|Another Double-Double and 1,000 Points For Blair As Hatters Hang On For Win At Mercer|
Garfield Blair became the 29th member of Stetson's 1,000 points club and recorded a double-double in the process.
Down by nine with approximately three minutes left, Mercer (11-15, 6-7 A-Sun) simply wouldn’t go away, going on a 7-0 run, punctuated by a Calvin Henry slam off a feed from James Florence, to make it 66-64 with 2:07 left. Although the Bears would not score until the final minute, Shaddean Aaron hit a three-pointer with 27.6 seconds left that cut the Hatter lead to three, 70-67. Missed Stetson free throws allowed the Bears to hang around and
A torrid eight for 13 (61.5 %) showing from beyond the arc in the first half pushed the Hatters to a 34-19 advantage at the intermission.
After being fouled on the inbounds play, sophomore guard A.J. Smith (
Smith hit a three-pointer while being fouled, converted the four-point play, then drew a charge on Mercer guard Mark Hall, grabbed a rebound on the defensive end, swished another shot and made a driving layup in traffic, keying the Hatters through a strong stretch that put them ahead 47-31 at the first media timeout of the second half. Smith’s tenacity resulted in three fouls being whistled on Hall in a span of just six seconds.
The Bears would not be subdued so easily, however. A combination of
The game featured an interesting double milestone as both Blair and
Blair’s double-double was the third of his season and the fourth of his career; he had 24 points and 11 rebounds in Thursday’s loss at
Both teams struggled out of the gate offensively, although Lohuis’s three-pointer pushed Stetson to a 5-0 lead at the first media timeout. The Hatters did not allow Mercer to score for the first six minutes and 10 seconds, utilizing several blocked shots to keep the Bears off the scoreboard. Stetson continued its slow push, getting ahead 13-5 with just over eight minutes left in the half on a strong post move and basket by Blair.
The Hatters maintained their lead at a similar margin for most of the rest of the half. Perimeter shooting was a key weapon in Stetson’s arsenal as the team drained eight three-pointers before halftime, including a punctuating triple from Blair just before the buzzer to send the Hatters to the locker room ahead 34-19.
Blair, Lohuis and Thomas scored nine points each to drive Stetson with Blair also grabbing a team-high five rebounds.
The Hatters are through with the road for the regular season, playing their final four contests at the friendly confines of the