LAKELAND, Fla. – The No. 6 Florida Southern College men's basketball trailed for nearly 27 minutes as the team rallied for a 77-72 victory over Rollins College. The Mocs improve to 22-2, including a 14-2 mark in the Sunshine State Conference, while the Tars drop to 12-11, and 6-9 in the SSC. The Mocs maintain a first-place lead in the SSC, a half-game ahead of No. 5 Nova Southeastern, who is 13-2 in the SSC.
Jalyn Hinton and Brandon Carroll led the Mocs with 16 points apiece. Brett Hanson (15) and E.J. Dambreville also totaled double-digit points for the home team. Dambreville was a rebound shy of a double-double. Jack Rauch provided a presence on the defense as he brought down eight rebounds on the night.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- The Tars opened the scoring before the Mocs went on a 6-0 run to take a 6-2 lead, just two and a half minutes into the game. Using a 6-0 run of their own, the Tars would retake the lead, 11-10, as the game hit the under 16-minute media timeout. Rollins kept its hot streak going after the timeout, as the run jumped to an 11-0 run.
- Florida Southern's four-minute scoring drought ended at the line as DeAndre Campbell made the second of his two free throws for a 16-11 visitors lead. Just as the Mocs brought the score within one, the Tars kept responding to keep the score in their favor.
- Florida Southern's defense picked the team up as they got a big stop after the Tars forced a turnover in the middle of the court. Brandon Carroll put the block on a layup attempt by Daylon Gumm. This allowed Carroll to dish out the rebound to Campbell who was at the other end of the court and drained a three to bring the Mocs within one, 21-20. Carroll would tie the game at 22-22 with 8:48 to go in the first 20 minutes. The Mocs would take their first lead of the game since they last led 10-8 at the 15:52 mark.
- Over the next two minutes, Southern would grow its lead to as much as five, 31-26. Rollins closed out the final four and a half minutes of the first half with a 14-2 run to take an eight-point lead into the halftime break. Trailing 40-33 at the half, Florida Southern matched a season-low with 33 first half-points.
- Rollins came out of the break with back-to-back layups to grab the games' first double-digit lead, for either team, 44-33. Florida Southern put together a 14-4 run to climb back into the game, however, Rollins still led 50-47.
- With 11:41 on the clock, from well beyond the arc, Jair Rodgers took a step back and drained a three to tie the game at 50-50.
- Rollins would take back control of the game and answer with a 7-0 run to extend its lead to 57-50 with just over ten minutes remaining in the half. The teams would spend the next four minutes trading baskets as Rollins maintained a steady five to seven-point advantage. Leading up to the under four-minute media timeout, the Mocs quickly used a 4-0 run to pull within one on a layup by Hinton, 67-66.
- As the Tars attempted to begin their possession with three and a half minutes remaining, Hinton forced the turnover and put home the slam dunk to give the home team its first lead (68-67) since the 4:28 mark of the first half.
- The Tars would send E.J. Dambreville to the line to shoot two at 2:09, he would make both shots for a three-point Moccasin lead. Jakobi Bonner responded with a three-point shot of his own to give him 20 points on the night and a 70-70 score.
- As the final minute of play began, Carroll sealed the come from behind victory as he capitalized on a pass from Hinton and drained the three. The Southern defense responded well as they forced a pair of missed three-point shots by the Tars to seal the 77-72 victory.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
- The Mocs 33 points in the first half tied a season-low, which was set in an 85-77 victory over Tampa on January 22. Carroll and Hinton led the Mocs with 16 points each as eight different Moccasins scored.
- For the game, Southern shot 47.5% from the field, while limiting the Tars to a 41.7 shooting percentage.
- Southern used capitalized for 17 points on 14 turnovers by Rollins. Florida Southern was quick to score as they recorded 25 fast break points to only four by the visitors.
- The Mocs had 16 assists on 28 makes, three different players totaled three assists to lead the team in that category.
- Defensively, Hinton helped lead the Mocs comeback win as he swatted away four attempts by the visitors.
- Hanson added 15 points, and now has 2,072 points for his illustrious career, the third-highest total in school history. He has also tallied 801 rebounds, good for seventh in the program's record book. His 204 steals are good for sixth, while his assist total of 407 ranks eighth.
Southern will head to face Nova Southeastern on Saturday. That game, on February 15, will be broadcast by ESPN exclusively on ESPN.com and the ESPN app. Southern is running a fan bus to South Florida for the doubleheader. The cost is $25, which includes the bus trip, admission to the games, and food and beverages on the bus. Tickets can be purchased by contacting Finley Allen (email@example.com) or Al Green (firstname.lastname@example.org).