|November 17, 2012||1st||2nd||Final|
|Stats at a Glance||CU-M||SSU|
|FG Percentage||.434 (23-53)||.382 (21-55)|
|3P FG Percentage||.500 (6-12)||.333 (7-21)|
|FT Percentage||.556 (10-18)||.600 (15-25)|
Holt - 7
Devlin - 1
Vance - 1
Gouch - 1
Morgan - 1
Gouch - 1
PORTSMOUTH, Ohio – Brian Blackmon was unable to convert on a layup for Cumberland with seconds remaining as Shawnee State University pulled out a 64-62 victory against the visiting Bulldogs on Saturday evening.
Down 62-59 with 39 seconds left to play, Lester Gude hit from behind the arc to tie the game and forced SSU to call a timeout. The ball went to the Bears’ Jeremy Bennington who missed a three-pointer for the tie, but SSU was able to get two more shots off in the paint thanks to two offensive rebounds before the ball was batted out to the Bears near midcourt. The Bulldogs committed a foul with six-and-a-half seconds remaining, sending Devon Carter to the line. Carter converted on both shots, leading to a Cumberland timeout. Blackmon grabbed the ball and drove coast to coast, but the contested layup would not drop in, sending the Bulldogs home in defeat.
CU (2-3, 0-2 Mid-South) shot 43 percent from the field compared to the Bears’ 38 percent, but were outrebounded by fifteen and gave up 19 offensive rebounds. Both teams struggled from the line, with the Bulldogs going 10-of-18 and SSU hitting 15-of-25. The squads combined for 43 turnovers and dished out 21 assists.
Blackmon, E.J. Perry and Taj Abdul-Kaudeyr combined for 29 of the Bulldogs’ 36 points in the first twenty minutes. A jumper by Perry with five minutes remaining in the half gave CU their largest lead of the night, up 30-20. SSU stormed back with an 8-0 run before another score by Perry. Abdul-Kaudeyr knocked down two shots, with one coming right before the halftime buzzer, to send the Bulldogs into the locker room with a 36-32 advantage.
Cumberland held onto the lead until Bennington was fouled while shooting a three-pointer, hitting two of three. The Cumberland bench was whistled for a technical foul, prompting Bennington to knock two more down, giving the Bears a 44-42 lead.
CU then fell behind by as many as six points, but a Gude three-pointer knotted the score at 54 with just under five minutes to play. Creshaun Holt hit four consecutive free throws to put the Bulldogs ahead 59-57, but a three-pointer by Carter put SSU up one. Two free throws by the Bears increased the lead to three before the final plays of the game determined the outcome.
Perry scored a team-high 15 points, followed by Abdul-Kaudeyr’s 13. Blackmon contributed 12, and Gude added 11 off of the bench. Abdul-Kaudeyr and Holt each reeled in seven rebounds.
For SSU, Bennington produced a game-high 17 points, and Tyler Morgan grabbed 13 boards.
CU travels to Williamsburg, Ky., on Tuesday for a 7 p.m. ET contest against the University of the Cumberlands.