Adams' layup with 1.7 seconds gives Mountain Lions ninth win in a row
CENTRAL, S.C. – Frank Adams' layup with 1.7 seconds remaining was the difference as Young Harris College edged Southern Wesleyan University 79-78 in a men's basketball game Tuesday (Jan. 3) evening at Tysinger Gymnasium.
The Mountain Lions won the 10th game – twice as many as last season – as they improved to 10-2 as they won their ninth consecutive game. The Warriors fell to 6-7. Young Harris returns to action Jan. 10 when they host North Greenville College in a 7 p.m. contest at the YHC Basketball Arena.
Southern Wesleyan reeled off six unanswered points to take a six-point lead at 53-47 after Phillip Williams hit a free throw with 14:34 remaining. Malcolm Jackson, who scored 19 of his game-high 26 points in the second half, hit consecutive field goals – both coming after the Mountain Lions forced a turnover - and Adams, who finished with 15 points, connected on two free throws to knot the game at 53 two minutes later.
Jackson added two more deep three-pointers from the top of the key to give Young Harris a 59-55 advantage with 10:34 to play. However, the Warriors responded and took a 66-65 lead on a jumper by Sebias Duck, who led Southern Wesleyan with 22 points, with 6:42 remaining.
After Adams hit two free throws to give Young Harris a 71-66 lead with 4:08 left, the Warriors rallied to tie the game at 71 less than a minute later after Kenny Joyner hit two free throws. The Mountain Lions took a 74-71 lead after Bryson Robertson, who finished with 12 points and nine rebounds, nailed a three-pointer from the right corner as the shot clock was expiring.
Two free throws by Nikola Lambic, who finished with 17 points, and baskets from Williams and Michael Lieberman gave the Warriors a 77-74 lead with 1:33 remaining. A jumper by Vince Martin, who scored 17 of his 20 points in the first half, cut the deficit to one at 77-76. Southern Wesleyan took a 78-76 lead when Duck hit the first of two free throws with 43 seconds left. Martin hit one of two free throws on the Mountain Lions' next possession.
Southern Wesleyan had a chance to add to their lead but Duck missed a baseline jumper with six seconds left. Robertson grabbed the rebound, passed the ball to Martin who quickly found wide open Adams streaking down the court, who laid the ball in for the game-winning basket with 1.7 seconds left.
"At the last timeout, I told the guys to get one stop and then run the ball back at them," said Young Harris head coach Pete Herrmann. "Bryson made a big three late for us and was able to make the Southern Wesleyan player miss on their final shot. Vince made a great pass to find Frank on the final basket.
"I thought our defense was a whole lot better in the second half," added Herrmann. "We held them to less than 40 percent shooting (38.9) in the second half and forced 23 turnovers in the game. This was a very good win and continues to give us confidence.
The Warriors had one last chance to score, but Jackson intercepted the out of bounds pass at midcourt and held on for the win.