Coppin falls to Iowa State in overtime Singletary, Brockington combine for 47 points in 77-74 loss to Big 12 school

December 07, 1997|By Bill Free | Bill Free,SUN STAFF

AMES, Iowa -- Iowa State overcame the hot shooting of Danny Singletary and Antoine Brockington to turn back Coppin State, 77-74, last night in an overtime thriller in the championship game of the Cyclone Challenge at Hilton Coliseum.

Singletary (27) and Brockington (20) combined for 47 points, but it wasn't enough as Coppin State (2-2) narrowly failed to post its second road win over a Big 12 Conference school in five days.

Coach Fang Mitchell refused to criticize the officiating, even though host Iowa State scored its last six points from the foul line.

"It's a tough game out here on the road," Mitchell said. "I'm not going to argue or complain about anything. All I know is there was no quit in my kids and they played their tails off tonight."

Singletary's heroics in the final minutes of regulation carried Coppin State to a 64-64 tie and into overtime with Iowa State (4-1).

Singletary tied the game at 64 with a driving layup, moments after he had stole an inbounds pass to keep the Coppin hopes alive.

Tyran Watkins missed three straight one-and-one situations in the final minutes, preventing Coppin from building more than a three-point lead.

Singletary and Brockington were throwing in jump shots from all angles down the stretch to take the home crowd out of the game most of the time.

But the Eagles, who ended an 0-for-16 drought against Big 12 schools by beating host Missouri, 78-70, Tuesday night, were hurt when their inside force, Kareem Lewis, fouled out of the game with 3: 20 remaining, allowing Iowa State to creep back into the game.

Coppin State surged to a 51-41 lead with 8: 35 left on four straight points by Singletary, who had to replace the shaken-up Brockington on the foul line with 8: 50 remaining.

Brockington got hit hard on a shot by Marcus Fizer, who drew a technical foul on the play, forcing Brockington to leave the game for nearly two minutes.

Singletary hit the two free throws for a 49-41 lead and came right back with a jumper for a 51-41 advantage.

The first half was an old-fashioned physical duel with a slow tempo that favored the bigger and slower Cyclones.

But Iowa State really didn't take advantage of the opportunity and had to settle for a 30-28 lead at halftime.

The home team kept pounding the ball inside to Klay Edwards and Fizer in the first 20 minutes and they combined for 14 points against the Singletary-led Eagles.

Singletary came out with a cold hand and missed his first two shots, but continued to fire away and wound up with 12 first-half points.

While Singletary was carrying the load for Coppin, his high-scoring teammate Brockington was being taken out of the game for long stretches by a box-and-one defense.

Handling the man-to-man duties on Brockington was senior walk-on, 5-11 guard Matt Knoll, who was clinging to the Coppin star everywhere he went.

Brockington was limited to six points in the first half and got into foul trouble with his second with five minutes left in the half.

Brockington was taken out by Mitchell and didn't return the rest of the half, winding up sitting out more than seven minutes.

The fact the Eagles didn't fall apart without Brockington and were still very much in the fight had to be a big boost to the Coppin hopes in the locker room at halftime.

The Eagles got a big boost just before the buzzer sounded at the end of the first half when Fred Warrick tossed up a long three-point shot that went swishing through the net, cutting the lead to 30-28.

Warrick was standing in the right place when Fizer rejected point guard Troy Lewis' jumper from the corner with three seconds left, sending the ball right into Warrick's hands far out on the left side.

Warrick didn't hesitate at bit in launching the three-pointer.

Coppin led by three several times in the opening minutes of the game and was still ahead, 13-12, near the middle of the half.

But a three-pointer by junior college transfer Jerry Curry gave Iowa State a 15-13 lead and the home team slowly pulled away to a 28-21 advantage late in the half.

Before Coppin State even took the floor last night, the Eagles were hearing all kinds of praise from Iowa State's successful young coach Tim Floyd.

"Coppin State will show us the best half-court man-to-man pressure we'll see this year," said Floyd, who has guided Iowa State to three NCAA tournament appearances in three years at the school. "Coppin's three perimeter players are better than anybody we'll see in our conference this season except for Kansas."

Floyd was talking about Brockington, Singletary and Warrick, who had combined to average 48.6 points a game entering last night's Cyclone Challenge championship showdown.

Coppin had staved off a strong comeback by Southwest Texas State, 60-59, Friday to reach the final while host Iowa State had routed Texas Southern, 83-60, to advance.

Pub Date: 12/07/97

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