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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Friends takes over first in KCAC

BY BROOKS SEELEY
Eagle correspondent

As bad as the Friends men started the game shooting the basketball Thursday night, the Falcons knew they were going to have to start making some baskets.

Friends recovered from the slow start and went on runs at the end of both halves to beat McPherson 75-70 at the Garvey Center and claim sole possession of first place in the KCAC.

Chris Jackson scored a game-high 26 points to lead the Falcons.

Friends' struggles out of the gate were obvious. It went without a field goal for the first 10 1/2 minutes, missing 13 shots. With five minutes left in the half Friends trailed 26-12.

"The game was really muddled up to that point, we were really tentative in the full court," Friends coach Dale Faber said. "Up to that point we were questioning whether or not we could make a basket and when you do that you start to get tight."

The lid finally came off the basket for the Falcons.

Jackson's three-point basket followed by a Nick O'Nelio three tied the score 28-28.

"We have good players that made very nice plays down the stretch," Faber said. "Nick hit a big-time three, and he's been waiting for an opportunity to step up."

A 19-4 run to close the half gave Friends a 31-30 lead even though it shot just 22 percent from the field, including 2 of 11 threes.

"We knew we had to make a run and it didn't come all game and we knew we had one in us," Friends' Romar Jones said.

Friends came out much better in the second half.

The Falcons took a 41-34 lead three minutes into the second half sparked by back-to-back threes by Jackson.

McPherson, led by Mike Reece's 23 points, would fight back. Reece scored 14 in the second half, including his layup that gave McPherson a 58-55 lead with eight minutes left.

Trailing 63-58, Friends again went on a late-half run.

It began with a Jones three and finished with the only things that kept Friends in it at the beginning, free throws and defense.

Friends made 6 of 9 free throws in the last three minutes and its defense held McPherson while Friends went on a 17-7 run to end the game.

"This means a lot, to come back from 14 down, it shows how tough we are," Jackson said. "We were shooting bad, but we knew we would turn it around and what really helped us out was turning it around defensively."

MCPHERSON: Reece 9-15 5-5 23, Frazier 3-11 5-8 12, Dominique 5-10 0-2 10, Severs 1-3 0-0 2, Darden 1-1 0-0 2, Lamb 5-8 0-0 10, Moore II 3-4 1-2 7, Thomas 1-6 2-5 4. Totals 28-61 13-22 70.

FRIENDS: Jackson 7-15 8-12 26, Jones 5-14 2-2 13, Hyde 3-10 5-6 11, O'Nelio 2-5 4-6 10, Richardson 1-6 1-2 3, Heard 4-5 0-4 8, Steven 0-3 4-4 4. Totals 22-58 24-36 75.

Halftime — Friends 31, McPherson 30. 3 pt. shooting — McPherson 1-10 (Frazier 1-3, Dominique 0-1, Severs 0-2, Nemechek 0-2, Thomas 0-1, Reece 0-1); Friends 7-23 (Jackson 4-9, O'Nelio 2-4, Jones 1-3, Richardson 0-4, Steven 0-3.). Rebounds — McPherson 37 (Lamb 8); Friends 43 (Hyde 11). Total fouls — McPherson 30, Friends 21. Technical fouls — McPherson: Lamb. Assists — McPherson 6 (Dominique 3), Friends 9 (Richardson 3).

Friends women 68, McPherson 51

MCPHERSON: Coberly 1-1 2-2 4, Robinson 1-4 1-4 3, Ducy 3-11 0-0 6, Weisenburger 3-10 2-4 8, Sharp 3-3 4-4 10, Watts 0-1 0-0 0, Ozbun 3-12 3-4 10, Sloan 1-1 0-0 3, Teeters 1-6 0-2 2, Hempe 0-1 0-0 0, Poland 2-4 1-3 5. Totals 18-54 13-23 51.

FRIENDS: Mills 1-3 3-4 6, Polley-Davis 4-10 2-2 10, Snell 2-7 4-4 9, Hillst 3-7 3-4 9, Halsig 6-13 0-1 15, Ely 0-2 0-2 0, Selves 0-3 4-4 4, O'Nello 3-3 0-0 6, Mathews 4-7 1-2 9. Totals 23-55 17-23 68.

Halftime — Friends 31, McPherson 21. 3's— McPherson 2-9 (Ozbun, Sloan); Friends 5-15 (Mills, Snell, Halsig 3). Rebounds — McPherson 40 (Ducy 8); Friends 39 (Polley-Davis 9). Assists — McPherson 3 (Weisenburger 2), Friends 10 (Polley-Davis 4).

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