Put Another in the Win Column for the Fish as PBA Downs #13-Ranked Rollins College
December 2, 2010
Written By: Michael Brown, Assistant A.D. for Athletic Communications
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla.- Facing their first nationally-ranked team of the season in #13-ranked Rollins College on Thursday evening at the Rubin Arena, the Palm Beach Atlantic University men’s basketball team hit big shots when they needed them most while limiting RC to a 36% shooting percentage for the contest. Trailing by five at halftime, the Sailfish shot 55% from the field in the second-half on their way to outscoring their opponent by ten points in the second-half and winning 68-63.
The defeat of Rollins (5-2) is the second time in three years that the Sailfish have knocked off the mighty Tars at home who were picked to win the Sunshine State Conference in the preseason poll. Winners of their last four contests, the Tars were bitten by an off-night of outside shooting as they finished 5-of-24 from long-range including 4-of-17 in the second-half.
The Sailfish now have their own four-game winning streak as they pushed their early season record to 6-2 after defeating Stetson University, Florida Tech, and now Rollins College over the past six days.
Palm Beach Atlantic once again utilized a strong scoring effort from senior David Wood who poured in game-high honors of 28 points on 8-of-15 from the floor including 5-of-9 from beyond the arc and 7-of-9 from the free-throw line. The senior transfer also brought down a team-high seven rebounds while adding four steals in 37 minutes of action.
Sophomore Matt Roy helped lift the Fish from their first-half deficit with his dynamic play on the night as he registered a career-high 18 points on 7-of-13 shooting and his second straight effort of connecting for four three-pointers while adding four assists.
The game opened with the Tars seemingly finding easy looks underneath as the visitors from Winter Park would jump out to a 9-3 lead with 16:21 left to play in the first-half after a pair of Myk Brown free-throws fell through the bottom of the net.
After some easy looks early on, the Tars would find it more difficult to get to the basket and began settling for outside shots, a tactic that would play into the hands of PBA’s transition offense that would lead to some big shots from the likes of PBA’s Wood and Roy as the tandem sank a combined five treys in the first-half.
The Tars lead in the opening half would grow to as many as seven points when reserve Alex Castillo came away with a basket at the 10:12 mark to push the early advantage to 15-8. A pair of Roy three-point bombs sandwiched a Schylur Gray basket and bucket by Castillo as the Sailfish cut the lead to only one point at 17-16.
The lead would grow to only five points in the first-half for Rollins when Nick Wolf made one of two free-throws just before the half as the Tars went into halftime leading 33-28.
An early three-pointer from RC forward Matt Robertson pushed the lead for Rollins to eight points early in the second-half before the Sailfish would take over.
A Wood three-pointer followed by two more from Roy pushed the Fish on top at 39-38 for their first lead with 15:31 remaining in the contest, a lead they would never relinquish again.
Feeding off the momentum of the home crowd and finding some gaps in the RC defense allowed the Sailfish to see their advantage reach double-digits when Wood connected for a jumper with less than ten minutes to play as PBA commanded the game at 48-38.
Although a run by RC would cut the lead back down to as close as two points, Palm Beach Atlantic sustain the challenge and would once again stretch their advantage back out to a more comfortable ten point cushion with under a minute to play.
Rollins would only turn the ball over 14 times while the rebounding and free-throws were nearly dead even as well.
After not shooting a free-throw during the entire first-half and nearly half way through the second-half, the Fish would connect on 14-of-17 from the charity stripe down the stretch to keep the opposition from coming any closer.
Rollins placed four starters in double-figures for the night with Brown leading with 19 points and Wolf, the reigning Sunshine State Conference Player of the Week pulling in 18 points and 10 rebounds in 38 minutes.
After a busy past seven days, the Sailfish will now prepare for another busy week beginning on Monday, December 6th when they welcome in the University of Tampa for a 7 pm showdown at the Rubin Arena. The Fish will also take on Lynn University on Wednesday on the road while welcoming in another SSC foe in Florida Southern College on Saturday afternoon at 4 pm.