ST. AUGUSTINE, FL – Senior Brandon Parker scored 23 of his game-high 25 points, including the final five points of the game, after halftime to lift Francis Marion University to an 80-76 win at Flagler College, Saturday afternoon (Jan. 26) in Peach Belt Conference men's basketball action.
It is the fifth straight win for Francis Marion (13-3, 9-2) at Flagler, and it keeps FMU in a tie for second place in the conference standings with UNC Pembroke. The Patriots and Braves meet for the first time on Wednesday (Jan. 30) at 7:30 p.m. in Pembroke, N.C.
FMU returns to the Smith University Center on Saturday, Feb. 2, to take on Georgia College at 3:30 p.m.
Parker's 25 points moved him past former Patriot Allen Wilson (1996-98) and into 16th on the FMU career scoring list with 1,070 points. The Sumter native also led Francis Marion in rebounds (9) and assists (7) coming ever so close to what would have been only the third triple-double in program history .
Joining Parker in double-figures were junior guard Jaquez Smith who had 15, and freshman forward Winston Hill, who chipped in 12 off the bench. Smith scored all of his points in the first half, which included hitting 5-of-6 field goal attempts and all four of his three-pointers.
Senior guard Vaughn McCall led Flagler (7-10, 4-7) with 20 points and seven assists. Junior guard Damerit Brown and sophomore forward Chris Metzger added 16 apiece for the Saints.
With FMU trailing 76-75, Parker knocked down a three-pointer with 1:02 remaining to put Francis Marion up by two. After trading misses, Flagler had a chance to tie the contest with eight seconds left, but Hill rejected a McCall layup attempt to preserve the Patriot lead. Parker snagged the rebound, was fouled, and iced the game with a pair of free throws.
The two teams went back-and-forth throughout the first half, with the opening 20 minutes featuring seven ties and seven lead changes. Each squad built a lead as large as five, with FMU's five-point cushion coming at 20-15 after a Smith triple. Flagler countered with an 8-0 spurt to regain the lead with 7:19 remaining in the half.
Senior forward Je'Quan Perry put the Patriots briefly back in front with a three-pointer at 28-25, but the Saints answered with an 11-3 run to regain the advantage at 36-31. A pair of FMU free throws cut Flagler's lead to 36-33 at the half.
After the Saints picked up the first bucket of the second half to restore the five-point margin, Parker scored the next seven Patriot points to bring the visitors even at 40-40. Following a Flagler turnover, senior guard Ryan Davis knocked down a three-pointer to put Francis Marion back on top 43-40 with 16:19 to go. Once again Flagler responded, scoring the next six to wrestle the lead back from FMU.
The Patriots regained the advantage quickly and stretched the margin out to five on multiple occasions, but each time Flagler kept FMU from extending the edge any further. With 2:43 on the clock, Saints freshman swingman Gedi Juozapaitis knocked down a three to give Flagler a 71-70 lead, its first since 52-51. On the ensuing possession, Perry tripled to put FMU back on top 73-71. After McCall evened the score with a pair of free throws, Hill and Metzger each threw down a dunk for their respective sides, but Metzger was fouled on his, and he converted from the line to put the Saints ahead 76-75.
In the second half, Francis Marion went 17-for-28 from the floor (60.7 percent), including 6-of-10 from downtown.
For the game, FMU went 28-for-56 from the field, and made 13-of-26 from beyond the arc. The Patriots knocked down 11-of-13 from the charity stripe. Flagler connected on 28-of-53 from the floor, and 10-of-24 three-pointers. The Saints made 10-of-13 from the foul line.
The game featured a total of 14 ties and 16 lead changes.
01/26/19 3:32 p.m. at St. Augustine, Fla. (Flagler Gym)
FRANCIS MARION 80, FLAGLER 76
FRANCIS MARION (13-3, 9-2 PBC)
Brandon Parker 9-12 4-4 25; Jaquez Smith 5-8 1-2 15; Winston Hill 4-6 4-5
12; Kailex Stephens 4-14 0-0 9; Ryan Davis 2-7 2-2 8; Je'Quan Perry 2-5 0-0
6; Kendall Wall 2-4 0-0 5; Douglas Dwight 0-0 0-0 0; Gabriel Dickerson 0-0
0-0 0. Totals 28-56 11-13 80.
FLAGLER (7-10, 4-7 PBC)
Vaughn McCall 7-16 3-3 20; Chris Metzger 7-7 2-2 16; Damerit Brown 5-9 2-2
16; DeMari Davis 4-7 1-2 9; Gedi Juozapaitis 3-6 0-0 9; Jeffercy Jean 1-5
2-2 4; Gloire Biongo 1-2 0-0 2; Collin Blanchard 0-0 0-0 0; Kris Totoris 0-0
0-0 0; Logan Swackhammer 0-1 0-2 0. Totals 28-53 10-13 76.
Halftime: Flagler 36 Francis Marion 33
3-point goals--Francis Marion 13-26 (Jaquez Smith 4-4; Brandon Parker 3-6;
Je'Quan Perry 2-4; Ryan Davis 2-4; Kailex Stephens 1-6; Kendall Wall 1-1;
Winston Hill 0-1), Flagler 10-24 (Damerit Brown 4-7; Gedi Juozapaitis 3-5;
Vaughn McCall 3-8; Jeffercy Jean 0-3; Logan Swackhammer 0-1). Fouled
out--Francis Marion-None, Flagler-None. Rebounds--Francis Marion 28 (Brandon
Parker 9), Flagler 27 (Gedi Juozapaitis 9). Assists--Francis Marion 23
(Brandon Parker 7), Flagler 17 (Vaughn McCall 7). Total fouls--Francis
Marion 15, Flagler 14. Technical fouls--None. A-412