ORANGEBURG, SC – Junior guard Detrek Browning scored 14 of his game-high 22 points in the second half as Francis Marion University overcame a one-point halftime deficit to claim a 73-71 road win over Claflin University, Tuesday evening (Nov. 15) in non-conference men's basketball action.
The Patriots improve to 1-2, while Claflin falls in its season opener. FMU will play its home opener on Monday at 7 p.m. against Allen University.
FMU senior 6-8 center Kenneth Jackson scored a career-high 15 points, including hitting three of four shots from behind the the three-point arc, and grabbed seven rebounds. Junior 6-6 forward Judah Alexander tallied a double-double with 13 points and a career-high 16 rebounds.
The Patriots outrebounded Claflin 43-26 and held a 15-7 advantage in second-chance points.
Guard Triston Thompson led the Panthers with 16 points.
Claflin led by as many as eight (24-16) in the opening half, but FMU answered with nine straight points to lead 25-24. The score was knotted at 30-30 when the Panthers scored six consecutive points to go up 36-30. The Patriots then ended the half with a 5-0 spurt to draw within one as the teams exited for the locker rooms at halftime.
To open the second half, a three-pointer by junior Daniel Bridges and a bucket by Browning completed a 10-0 spurt for FMU as its lead swelled to 40-36. After a Claflin basket, Francis Marion scored the next eight points to lead 48-38 after a fast-break lay-in by Browning.
Francis Marion's largest lead came at 53-41 following a three-pointer by Browning at the 14:37 mark. The Patriots still held a 70-61 advantage with 1:21 remaining, but the Panthers put together a 7-0 run to trim the margin to 70-68.
Two free throws by Browning expanded the lead back to 72-68 with 10 ticks left, but three free throws by Trevor Dantzler pulled the Panthers to within 72-71 with five seconds remaining. Browning hit one-of-two free throws at :02, but Thompson's potential game-winning three-point attempt was off the mark at the final buzzer.
FMU connected on 46.3 percent of its field goal attempts, including 8-of-19 three-point attempts, and 15-of-23 free throw shots. Claflin shot 41.7 percent from the field, including 13-of-28 from beyond the arc, and 8-of-10 shots from the foul line.