FMU Men fall to Pacers 89-71

FMU Men fall to Pacers 89-71

FLORENCE, SC – Senior guard Christian Nobles accounted for 11 points in a decisive 17-4 run late in the game allowing USC Aiken to escape with an 89-71 win over Francis Marion University, Saturday afternoon (Feb. 4) in Peach Belt Conference men's basketball action.

FMU (8-14, 4-10) will travel to Augusta University on Wednesday for a 7:30 p.m. tip-off.  The Patriots' next home contest will be Saturday, Feb. 11, at 3:30 p.m. against Flagler College as FMU celebrates Homecoming.

FMU freshman point guard Jaquez Smith came off the bench to match starting point guard Detrek Browning for game-high scoring honors with 11 points apiece.  Browning pushed his career point total to 1,499.

Three other Patriots chipped in 10 points each: senior Kenneth Jackson, junior Judah Alexander, and sophomore Brandon Parker.  Alexander and Jackson each pulled down eight rebounds, while Smith handed out a team-high five assists.

Sophomore Mark Matthews led USCA (15-6, 9-5) with 19 points, while Nobles tallied 18.

Francis Marion led only briefly at the on-set of the game.  The Pacers would lead by as many as 12 in the opening half, at 36-24, before the Patriots closed the stanza with a 9-2 to spurt to draw within 38-33.

A three-pointer by Jackson gave the Patriots a 47-46 advantage only 2:29 into the second half.  The lead would be short-lived as Matthews answered at the other end with a three-pointer.  Five minutes later, FMU took a two-point advantage after a lay-in by senior Samson Nnaji with 12:53 remaining.

After USCA again regained the lead, Browning's three-pointer midway through the half put the Patriots on top 60-59.  However, again Matthews responded this time with a pair of three-pointers to put the Pacers ahead to stay.

The margin was only five at 70-65 with 5:53 on the clock when Nobles ignited the 17-4 run.

Francis Marion shot 39.4 percent from the floor, was 6-of-24 from three-point territory, and hit 13-of-20 free throw attempts.  The Pacers made 49.2 percent of their field goal attempts, including 9-of-24 from behind the arc, and were 16-of-25 at the foul line.

 
 
2/4/17 3:40 pm at Florence, SC (Smith University Center)
USC AIKEN 89, FRANCIS MARION UNIVERSITY 71
USC AIKEN (15-6 , 9-5 PBC)
Mark Matthews 7-12 2-2 19; Christian Nobles 5-10 6-8 18; Jalin Barnes 5-11
2-2 14; Austin Grimes 5-10 2-2 12; Henry Bolton III 4-8 1-2 10; Robert Hill
4-6 1-3 9; Nenad Milenkovic 1-3 0-0 3; Paris Ballinger 1-3 1-2 3; Faison
Brock 0-2 1-2 1; Raheem Freeman 0-0 0-2 0; Kevin Chuisseu 0-0 0-0 0. Totals
32-65 16-25 89.
FRANCIS MARION UNIVERSITY (8-14 , 4-10 PBC)
Detrek Browning 4-10 2-2 11; Jaquez Smith 4-12 1-2 11; Brandon Parker 4-13
2-3 10; Kenneth Jackson 4-12 0-3 10; Judah Alexander 4-9 2-2 10; Samson
Nnaji 3-3 2-3 8; Josh Council 2-4 2-3 7; John Jenkins 1-2 2-2 4; Nigel
Holley 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 26-66 13-20 71.
Halftime: USC Aiken 38 Francis Marion 33
3-point goals--USC Aiken 9-24 (Mark Matthews 3-5; Jalin Barnes 2-5;
Christian Nobles 2-4; Henry Bolton III 1-4; Nenad Milenkovic 1-2; Faison
Brock 0-1; Paris Ballinger 0-1; Austin Grimes 0-2), Francis Marion
University 6-24 (Jaquez Smith 2-4; Kenneth Jackson 2-6; Josh Council 1-2;
Detrek Browning 1-4; John Jenkins 0-1; Judah Alexander 0-1; Brandon Parker
0-6). Fouled out--USC Aiken-None, Francis Marion University-Judah Alexander.
Rebounds--USC Aiken 46 (Robert Hill 11), Francis Marion University 35 (Judah
Alexander 8; Kenneth Jackson 8). Assists--USC Aiken 19 (Christian Nobles 8),
Francis Marion University 15 (Jaquez Smith 5). Total fouls--USC Aiken 19,
Francis Marion University 18. Technical fouls--None. A-711
Charges Drawn: Samson, Jackson