MOC falls in top-ten contest
Published in Sports on January 5, 2006 2:04 PM
INSTITUTE, W. Va. -- Maurice Horton led all scorers with a career-high 29 points, but it wasn't enough as nationally ninth-ranked Mount Olive fell to No. 10 West Virginia State 99-90 Wednesday in day two of the West Virginia State University Classic at Institute, W. Va. The contest marked the first-ever all-top 10 match-up in men's basketball history for either team.
Mount Olive, which defeated Charleston Tuesday, posted a 1-1 record in the tournament. For the second consecutive game, free throws were the difference, but this time not in the Trojans' favor. Mount Olive was 11-for-17 from the line, while West Virginia State was 25-for-40.
Mount Olive (8-2) trailed by as many as six points midway through the first half before the Trojans capped a 13-2 run with an Elijah Rouse to Victor Young slam dunk to take a 28-23 lead with 8:23 left before intermission. West Virginia State (9-2) rallied to take a 32-31 lead on Ted Scott's three-point play with 5:46 remaining.
The lead change was the seventh and final lead change of the first half, which also saw six ties. West Virginia State held Mount Olive without a field goal over the final four minutes and went into halftime with a 52-39 lead.
West Virginia State carried a 12-2 run into the early minutes of the second half as Scott's three-pointer gave the Yellowjackets a 58-41 lead with 18:30 remaining. Horton, who scored Mount Olive's first 13 points of the second half, trimmed the lead down to eight, but West Virginia State went on to build its biggest lead as Dermayne Bullock's fastbreak layup gave the Yellowjackets a 71-52 margin with 12:38 remaining.
Mount Olive used three-point plays by Melvin Creddle and Elton Coffield to chip away at the lead, bringing the deficit down to 83-72 with 3:56 remaining. After the two teams exchanged a series of baskets, Creddle's drive with 2:39 left cut the margin to single digits at 87-78. The layup was part of a stretch in which Creddle scored eight consecutive points for the Trojans.
West Virginia State built the lead back to 10 points before Victor Young's layup with 1:41 remaining closed the gap to 92-84. After the Yellowjackets missed a pair of free throws, Creddle converted a layup to pull the Trojans within six and make it a two-possession game.
West Virginia State was back up by nine points with 48 seconds remaining as Scott hit 1-of-2 free throws and Jason Slay hit a pair of foul shots after Tony Cornett blocked a Trojan shot attempt.
The Trojans weren't out of it, however, as Rouse's layup cut the lead to seven and Coffield's steal set up Montel Jones for a basket to pull Mount Olive within 95-90 with 30 seconds left.
But West Virginia State capitalized on a Trojan personal foul and technical foul with 28 seconds remaining, hitting 3-of-4 free throws to seal the win.
Horton, who pulled down eight rebounds and recorded three steals, was 12-for-24 from the field, including 5-for-11 from three-point range. Creddle scored 18 of his 25 points in the second half and dished out seven assists. He also pulled down eight rebounds.
Young finished with 10 points, while Rouse flirted with his second consecutive double-double, tallying eight points and nine rebounds. Coffield, who scored a season-high 28 points the previous night, was held to seven points Wednesday.
Cornett led West Virginia State with 26 points, while Scott and Anton Duncan added 24 points apiece as the three combined for 74 of the Yellowjackets' 99 points. Duncan pulled down a game-high 13 rebounds for West Virginia State, which outrebounded Mount Olive 53-41. Christopher Dunn dished out a game-high nine assists for the Yellowjackets.
The loss ends Mount Olive's five-game winning streak and makes the Trojans' record 2-2 in their last four games against national top 10 teams.
Mount Olive resumes Carolinas-Virginia Athletics Conference action Saturday as the Trojans play host to Anderson. Tip-off is 4 p.m. at Kornegay Arena.
MOC Sports Information
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