THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 07, 2013
Jacksonville Clipped By Mercer 67-64 In Overtime
Dolphins now in a three-way tie for third in the A-Sun at 7-5
MACON, Ga. – Jacksonville went toe-to-toe with Mercer for 45 minutes, but could have used just a little more time as the Dolphins came up short 67-64 overtime loss on Thursday night in Hawkins Arena. JU (12-13; 7-5 A-Sun) now sits in a three-way tie for third in the league standings with Stetson and USC Upstate. Mercer (15-9; 8-3) has a game and a half lead over the trio for second, but still a half-game back of Florida Gulf Coast.
Freshman Jarvis Haywood (Charlotte, N.C.) led four players in double figures for Jacksonville with 13 points while junior Javon Dawson (Cordele, Ga.) added 12 points, nine rebounds and three assists. Dawson scored all six of the Dolphins’ points in overtime, tying the game twice with a pair of free throws and again with a short jumper. Haywood and Dawson have combined to win the last four A-Sun Newcomer of the Week Awards for JU.
With JU down by three following a go-ahead three pointer by Mercer’s Travis Smith (14 points) with 30 seconds left, the Dolphins looked to the 6’6” University of Utah transfer once again. Dawson had two highly contest looks from three but could not get the equalizer to fall forcing JU to split the season series with the Bears.
The Dolphins shot 1-9 in overtime, but were kept alive by the 4-4 showing at the foul line from Dawson.
“We were down double figures in the first half and made a valiant effort to come back,” said Head Coach Cliff Warren. “Unfortunately we had a couple of lulls in the game when we missed a few block outs allowing them to get some offensive rebounds. We also gave them a few too many open looks from three in the first half.”
Freshman Kordario Fleming (Memphis, Tenn.) posted his third double-double of the season for JU as he matched a career best with 11 rebounds to go along with 10 points, three blocks and two assists. None of his rebounds were bigger then his offensive putback with 10 seconds left in regulation that gave the Dolphins a 58-57 advantage.
Mercer’s Langston Hall (23 points) then had a chance to give the Bears the win from the foul line, but the 88.1 percent free throw shooter missed the second of two attempts with 3.6 seconds left. Junior Dylan Fritsch (Albuquerque, N.M.) (10 points) secured the rebound to force the extra session.
In the first half JU answered a 15-2 run by Mercer with a 12-2 stretch to close out the opening period. Haywood scored five points during the spurt that pulled the Dolphins to within two (27-25) at the break. The opening five minutes of the second period was highlighted by five lead changes and two ties before Mercer built a seven point cushion with a 13-5 stretch over an eight minute span.
JU would then slowing start chipping away and eventually pulled to within one on a three by senior Russell Powell (Newnan, Ga.) with 1:15 left that set up the Fleming to give the Dolphins the lead.
The Dolphins travel to Kennesaw State on Saturday. Listen on 92.5 FM.
• The Dolphins were without junior guard Keith McDougald (Jacksonville, Fla.) who was serving a one-game suspension by the A-Sun following his ejection against FGCU last Saturday
• Jacksonville had won their last three Thursday night games
• Fleming has had double-digit rebounds in each of the last two games
• Freshmen Marcellous Bell (Hyattsville, Md.) has now hit six of his last eight from three following his three-pointer in the second half
Jacksonville shot over 80 percent from the free throw line for the third straight game and sixth time this season connecting on 16-20 attempts (80.0%)
The Dolphins outrebounded Mercer 46-34 and had 17 offensive rebounds