Pilots top Tigers 89-85 at The Dock
November 21, 2006
Shreveport, LA---The last two contests between the LSUS Pilots (6-1) and the East Texas Baptist University Tigers (0-3) were both decided by three points; a 118-115 double-overtime victory by LSUS in 2004; and a 90-87 LSUS victory that was decided at the buzzer in regulation. Tuesday night’s contest at The Dock was just as exciting, and ended once again in favor of the Pilots as they outlasted the Tigers down the stretch and walked away with an 89-85 victory.
LSUS built a 44-39 halftime lead after shooting a combined 48% (18-of-38) from the floor which was highlighted by Jamon Morris and Josh Porter combining for 22 of the Pilots first half points. Despite shooting just 3-of-12 from beyond the arc, the Pilots found some success in the post.
“Porter was hot early and then Jamon carried us the rest of the half with some big buckets under the basket,” commented Pilots Head Coach Chad McDowell.
ETBU shooting guard Chris Isom proved to be a thorn in the side of the Pilots all night and finished the half with 13-points and five boards, while teammate Brandon Palmer finished with 14-points on 5-0of-7 shooting.
Isom tied the game at 52-52 at the 16:16 mark of the second half, but failed to convert on the three-point play which would have given the Tigers their first lead since the midway point of the first half.
The Pilots stretched their lead back to as many as six points, but an 8-0 run which was capped by a Bryan Whitmore three-point field goal put the Tigers ahead 65-63 with 9:12 remaining.
LSUS once again built a lead as large as eight points with 3:27 remaining, but the Tigers once again came roaring back and cut the Pilot lead to 76-75 with under 2:00 remaining in the half.
The Pilots struggled from the free-throw line the entire game, finishing a combined 16-of-28, but managed to connect on all eight attempts within the final 1:30 of the contest which proved to be the difference as they went on to win by a final score of 89-85.
Isom finished with a game high 29-points and 13-rebounds, collecting the games only double-double for the Tigers. Palmer had a quiet second half, collecting just two points and finished with 16, while Whitmore added 11. The Tigers committed 13 turnovers and won the rebounding battle by a 44-43 overall margin.
Five Pilots tallied double-digit scoring totals with Porter leading the charge with 19-points. Blake Whittle added 18-points and six rebounds; Freddy Hughes finished with 17-points and seven assists; Morris finished with 16-points and eight rebounds; Greg Tyer pitched in with 11-points and eight rebounds; and Kyile Byrd added seven points and seven boards.
“We still have yet to play our best basketball. Tonight we didn’t play our best, but our guys stuck together and battled hard. We are finding ways to win which shows we have a lot guts and character on this team. I think out best is yet to come, and once we get everyone on the same page, and start making free throws, we are going to be pretty tough,” concluded McDowell.