Sailfish Close Out Calendar Year With Victory Versus Montevallo

Written By: Michael Brown, Palm Beach Atlantic University SID

LAKELAND, Fla.- Despite their early season growing pains, the Palm Beach Atlantic University men’s basketball team perhaps got things moving in a positive direction on Saturday night by posting a 76-65 victory over Montevallo University at the Holiday Inn/Legler Classic.

Playing their second game in as many days on the campus of Florida Southern College for the holiday tournament, the Sailfish utilized some early shooting success on their way to their second victory of the season under first-year head coach Terry Primm. Ironically enough, both PBA victories this season have come at a neutral site as PBA earned their first win of the year at the Tarleton Classic when they defeated Texas A&M-Commerce.

The Sailfish jumped to an early-game lead when junior Manny Lopez (San Juan, Puerto Rico) nailed his first three-pointer of the night with 17:21 left to play, giving the blue and white a 5-2 advantage, a lead they would never relinquish.

Freshman Brandon Mitchell (Minneapolis, Minn.) would stretch PBA’s lead to a first-half high of 15 points by connecting on his only field-goal of the evening on a three-pointer with just over four minutes remaining in the opening period.

Lopez led the first-half efforts of the Fish with 13 points and five rebounds as PBA entered the lockeroom with a 38-28 cushion.

The second-half featured a more balanced attack for the Fish with even better results as they outscored Montevallo by only one point (38-37) but held off MU’s scrappy play to the tune of the 75-67 victory for the Fish.

Senior Anthony Fitzroy (Boca Raton, Fla.) paced the Sailfish efforts by totaling a team-leading 24 points on 7-of-13 shooting from the field while connecting on 50% of his shots from beyond the arc (5-10). PBA’s unquestioned floor leader and the only senior on this year’s squad, Anthony also posted solid numbers with five rebounds and five assists.

Beyond Anthony’s team-high scoring figure, three other Sailfish registered double-figure totals in points as well. Lopez was next in line with 17 points while also adding in seven rebounds. Sophomore Anthony Gugino (N. Palm Beach, Fla.) put together yet another solid performance as well as he collected a double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds to aide the Sailfish cause.

Junior David Powell (Hollywood, Fla.) continued to provide the Fish with a dangerous outside threat off the bench with 11 points while hitting 3-of-4 attempts from long range.

As a team, PBA put together a solid night from beyond the arc as they were successful on 12-of-23 attempts overall.

Despite their early-game struggles, Montevallo (5-7) never quit and pushed Palm Beach Atlantic till the final buzzer. Terrill Humphrey paced the squad with 19 points despite a rough night from the floor as he connected on just 6-of-19 shots.

PBA will return home to West Palm Beach for their next game which is scheduled for 4 p.m. on Wednesday, January 2nd at the Rubin Arena.

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