Sailfish Run On All Cylinders to Knock Off Sharks

Written by: Will Johansen, Sports Information Assistant

Photo courtesy of Ron HilliardPhoto courtesy of Ron Hilliard

Box Score

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla.- Playing in front of the largest home crowd all season, the Palm Beach Atlantic men's basketball team (10-10, 6-7 SSC) did not disappoint the Sailfish faithful, as they defeated Nova Southeastern (5-15, 2-11 SSC) 82-71 Wednesday night inside Rubin Arena. For the sixth time this season, Bakari Warthen led the way offensively for PBA, finishing with 19 points. Wednesday night’s performance marks ten games in a row for the sophomore and 16 overall on the year.

The Sharks jumped out to a quick and early lead, taking a 9-0 advantage in the opening minute and a half. Nova Southeastern extended their lead to 15-5 with 14:56 left to play before the Sailfish starting really fighting back. PBA responded on a 15-4 run over the next 7:49 of play, tying the game at 20 with 6:50 remaining in the half. Following a Shark turnover and Malek Barber layup on the ensuing possession, Palm Beach Atlantic gained their first lead of the contest.

Once the Sailfish earned their first lead of the contest with 6:34 to play in the first half, they stepped on the accelerator, spreading their lead to as many as 15 before the final first half score of 42-30.

While the Sailfish were outscored in the second half 41-40, their first half advantage allowed the ‘Fish to put things in cruise control for the duration of the second half, as the closest Nova got to tying the game back was was a slim seven-point advantage for the ‘Fish.

The lone senior on the Sailfish squad, Shavanno Cooper, finished his Wednesday night with a dozen points, hitting 6-of-8 from the field while also leading the team in rebounds with eight.

Juniors Grant Gullett and Lucas Morales each finished the evening with 11 a piece. Gullett knocked down 3-of-7 from the field but was helped by a 5-of-6 night from the charity stripe. Morales connected on 4-of-8 field goals on the evening, with 3 of them being from downtown.

For the Sharks, Dwayne Gibson led the way offensively, as he finished with 20 points on the night.

The ‘Fish dominated the Sharks in the paint, on second chances, and from the bench Wednesday night. PBA outscored Nova 48-22 in the paint, 20-0 off of second chances, and 32-16 from the bench.

The Sailfish return to the Rubin Arena Saturday afternoon, Feb. 4 as they host Florida Southern College beginning at 4 p.m.

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