Mercer Rallies To Defeat ODU, 79-73 In CIT Quarterfinal
March 21, 2012
Post-Game Press Conference:
NORFOLK, VA-- Travis Smith's three-pointer with 1:55 left put Mercer (25-11) ahead for good at 70-68 and the Bears finished the game on a 12-6 run to defeat the Monarchs of Old Dominion (22-14), 79-73 in the quarterfinals of the Collegeinsider.com post season basketball tournament at the Constant Center.
ODU led by five, 34-29 at halftime and by as much as 12, 47-35 with 15:28 left in the game after a three-pointer by Breon Key.
Mercer rallied and with 2:50 left in the game tied the contest at 67-67 on a three-point play by Monty Brown.
ODU's Nick Wright hit one of two free throws to give ODU a 68-67 lead, but Travis Smith's trey put the Bears up 70-68 with 1:55 left. After an ODU miss, Jakob Gollon scored to give Mercer a 72-68 lead.
A Donte Hill tip-in cut it to 72-70 with 44 seconds left. Jakob Gollon then hit two free throws and then Chris Smith scored on a layup to give Mercer a 76-70 lead.
Justin Cecil led Mercer with 22 points, followed by Gollon with 11 points and 12 rebounds. Langston Hall also added 13 points for the Bears.
Mercer shot .466 from the floor and outrebounde ODU 35-32. The Monarchs shot .453.from the field. Both teams made 11 three-pointers.
Mercer now advances to the semifinals against either Robert Morris or Fairfield.
ODU's seniors finished with 101 career wins, the most in school history. Senior Chris Cooper finished the season with a 10.6 ppg average and a 10.1 rpg average making him the first Monarch to do so since Cal Bowdler in 1999-00.