Flagler Stays Undefeated with Victory Over Palm Beach Atlantic
November 21, 2012
Written by: Michael Brown, Assistant A.D. for Communications
ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla.- Another hard-fought effort left the Sailfish men’s basketball on the wrong end of the score on Wednesday evening as they fell 86-80 to an undefeated Flagler College team. The Saints utilized the interior play of big-man Adam Jones and nine three-pointers as a team to sink the Sailfish who trailed by only two points at halftime.
In what could be described as a track meet style of play from both sides, neither team was able to pull away from the other in the contest as the former Florida Sun Conference rivals played close throughout.
Senior Dante Valentine led all scorers on the night with 19 points as PBA placed four players total in double-figures on the night. Valentine also dished out a season-high seven assists as he shot 6-of-14 from the field while adding in four rebounds and two steals.
Sophomore Marcus Hardy just missed out on a double-double with 17 points and nine rebounds as the Detroit, Michigan native finished 7-of-15 from the floor.
The Saints (3-0) were successful in holding back each offensive run the Sailfish (1-4) would throw at them.
PBA took their first lead (16-15) on a Hardy layup with 11:36 to go only to see the Saint answer back with a pair of free-throws from Matthias Sigurdarson to take the lead right back. The Sigurdarson free-throws would spark a 13-3 run for Flagler as they built a first-half advantage to double-digits.
The Fish however would claw their way back to just a two-point halftime deficit as a Valentine layup would close the gap to 44-42.
Matt Clark led Flagler in the opening half as the sharp-shooter nailed 4-of-7 attempts from beyond the arc to pace the Saints attack with 12 first-half points. PBA was led by Valentine with nine points and junior guard Christian Martinez with eight points on 3-of-5 shooting from the field.
Both teams topped the 50 percent shooting mark with PBA holding a slight edge with their 53.6-percent mark (15-28) including 6-of-11 shots from long-range.
After their solid run to end the first-half and a short halftime speech by head coach Terry Primm, the Sailfish were anxious to begin the second stanza.
They came out hot with a Martinez 3-point bomb to take a 45-44 lead. The next several minutes saw both teams push the tempo while changing the lead eight times between the two squads.
Trailing 68-67 following a Matthew Gierl 3-pointer with 8:29 remaining in the game, Flagler took a lead they would never relinquish as Jarrod Branco responded with a 3-poitner of his own.
Although the Sailfish would keep things within reach, the Saints would build their advantage to as many as nine points down the stretch as they closed out the game at the free-throw line.
A Fairfield University (NCAA Division I) transfer, the 6’8” Jones poured in 18 points on just 4-of-5 shooting from the field while doing solid work at the charity stripe (10-14) to lead the Saints attack.
Richard Brown and Clark each added in 14 points for Flagler.
Following Valentine and Hardy in the scorer’s column for PBA was 14 points from Martinez and a solid 10 point performance from senior Matt Roy off the bench.
Roy added in five assists and one steal on 4-of-9 shooting in 30 minutes of court time.
Flagler shot 55 percent (11-20) from the floor in the second-half while limiting PBA to a 45.5-percent (15-33) shooting mark.
PBA will be off the next few days for the Thanksgiving holiday before beginning preparations for their home opener to be played on Wednesday, November 28th versus Rollins College. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 pm.