Dolphins fall on the road to Mercer, 90-81

Jan. 2, 2006

Final Stats

MACON, Ga. - Mercer used some hot shooting in the first half and held off a late rally to beat the Jacksonville men's basketball team 90-81 in a key Atlantic Sun Conference contest on Monday night.

Mercer (2-7, 1-2 A-Sun) was on fire in the fire in the first half, taking a 53-39 lead on 59 percent shooting and five 3-pointers. The Bears pushed the lead to 25 before hanging on late for the win.

Jacob Skogen led Mercer with 22 points and Andrew Brown added 21 with 17 in the first half.

The Dolphins (1-9, 1-2 A-Sun) got 19 points from Antonio Cool and a career-high 16 points from Ljubisa Vrcelj in the loss. Evan Jefferson added a career-high 10 points off the bench.

"Mercer came out and shot the ball well and had one big run right before the half that cost us," said JU head coach Cliff Warren. "We played well in spurts, but we've got to learn how to play for the entire 40 minutes. We can't afford to take a possession off."

Mercer took control of the game by wrapping up the first half with an 11-2 run, capped by a 3-pointer by Caleb Skogen at the buzzer.

After the sluggish first half, the Dolphins offense came alive in the second half, hitting 14-of-27 from the floor and 4-of-10 from behind the arc.

The Dolphins fell behind by as many as 25 with 11 minutes left in the game but rallied late. Jacksonville got the deficit into single digits several times, but couldn't get over the hump as the Bears held on for the win.

Jacksonville is back in action again on Thursday at Stetson. Tipoff is scheduled for 8 p.m.