Morgan wins 1st game with 88-69 rout of UMES

January 17, 1993|By Jerry Bembry | Jerry Bembry,Staff Writer

It had taken them nearly six weeks with games played in nine different arenas to find their way home, so when the Morgan State Bears finally got to play their first game of the season at Hill Field House, they made sure to take advantage of the luxury.

Playing against a UMES team that had gotten off to a surprising 3-1 start in Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference play, the Bears played well early and built leads of as many as 26 points in cruising to an 88-69 win.

Want to try to figure out the Morgan State team? Don't even try. The Bears dressed eight players, with starting point guard Chico Langston and forward Michael Brewer suspended last night for their role in the bench-clearing brawl in Monday's game at North Carolina A&T. Morgan had lost its first nine games by an average of nearly 20 points. But the Bears made it look easy in winning their first game of the season.

"I was so glad to see some support from behind," Morgan coach Michael Holmes said of playing at home for the first time this season. "To have the students supporting us was good. I didn't feel like the lone ranger."

Guards Obadiah Johnson and Terry Sellers scored 20 and 17 points, respectively, to lead five players in double figures for Morgan State (1-9, 1-1 in the MEAC).

"Obadiah played well, but he still needs to work harder," Holmes said. "He's moving in the right direction."

Despite shooting just 34.2 percent in the first half, the Bears went into the break with a 35-28 halftime lead. UMES (6-7, 2-2) had overcome a 14-point first-half deficit and looked to make it a game in the second half, but the Bears got eight points from Johnson during a 23-9 run at the start of the second half to take a 58-37 lead.

UMES got to within 58-41 after back-to-back short jumpers by guard Marlin Kimbrew.

But by the time Johnson converted a three-point play that made it 71-45 with just under nine minutes left, UMES first-year coach Rob Chavez was finding a place for his starters on the Hawks bench.

UMES never got closer than 16 points the rest of the way.

"They just pounded us. They were more aggressive and they just dominated the whole game," Chavez said. "This team physically dominated us more than any team we've played this year."

There were no problems such as those that forced the suspension of the North Carolina A&T game when both the Bears and the Aggies were left with three players each after the fight that resulted in the suspension of the game at the end of the first half.

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