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Stetson Bows to Belmont in Final Minutes
Courtesy: Stetson University  
Release:  02/01/2007
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Tim Lang scored 13 points with 7 rebounds against Belmont.
by: Steve Simoneau
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In a game that saw 14 lead changes and eight ties, the Hatters came up a couple of baskets short in a 62-58 defeat to Belmont Thursday night at the Edmunds Center.  Tim Lang led Stetson with 13 points and seven rebounds.


“Going down the stretch I thought everyone played pretty well,” said head coach Derek Waugh.  “We had a lot of bright spots tonight and Belmont is a very experienced, good basketball team.  It is just frustrating that we were that close and couldn’t pull it off.”


A pair of Garfield Blair free throws with 3:34 left tied the game at 57.  Belmont’s Andy Wicke hit one of two free throws with 1:50 to go and Gabe McMillen of Stetson matched him to tie it up at 58 with 1:05 left.  Belmont’s Boomer Herndon broke free underneath seconds later to put the Bruins ahead by a basket.  Stetson was able to extend their next possession on a kicked ball, but after a timeout still failed to get off a shot and turned it over with nine seconds left.


The Bruins added a late lay-up to finish off the victory, Belmont’s sixth straight over the Hatters. 


Lang topped three Hatters in double figures with his 13 points.  The Aussie center, with his parents paying their first visit to the states in the stands, hit five-of-six field goal attempts including two three-pointers and hit his only free throw.  McMillen tossed in 11 points with a team-high five assists and also five rebounds.  Garfield Blair scored 10 to give him double figures for the 20th time. 


“Tim was phenomenal,” said head coach Derek Waugh.  “He was taking charges and came up big on the offensive glass.  He really stepped up.”


Only two Bruins reached double figures.  Herndon put in 11 and Wicke dropped in three three-pointers on the way to 10 points. 


Following a stomach-churning loss to Mercer on Friday in which the Hatters failed to hold a 19-point lead, Stetson played toe-to-toe with Belmont, which sports the league’s second-best record. 


The Hatters built a seven-point lead in the first half following a Lang three-pointer.  But the offensive dry spells that have plagued the Hatters this year soon followed and the Bruins reeled off a 16-4 run over a five-and-a-half minute stretch to take a 33-27 lead. 


Stetson immediately rebounded and stopped Belmont from scoring over the final 3:23 of the first half.  The Hatters 9-0 run over that period gave Stetson a 36-33 lead at the break.


A Blair layup at the 15:45 mark in the second half again gave Stetson a seven-point lead, but a 12-0 run from Belmont put the Bruins ahead 50-45 with 8:47 to go.  The Hatters came back with a 10-2 spurt that allowed the home team to take a 55-52 lead with 6:13 left.  But as the possessions lengthened and the defenses tightened on both ends, Belmont out-scored the Hatters 10-3 the rest of the way.   


The Hatters fall to 7-15 overall and 3-8 in the A-Sun.  Belmont improves to 15-8 and 9-3. 


Stetson continues the home stand Saturday night when Lipscomb travels to the Edmunds Center for a 7:00 p.m. tip-off.   



Stetson Men's Basketball