Morgan finishes regular season with 79-73 win

March 01, 1998|By Derek Toney | Derek Toney,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Morgan State completed its regular season yesterday with a 79-73 triumph over UMES in a Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference contest at Baltimore City Community College.

The game proved to be a pre- lude to this week's conference tournament at the Richmond Coliseum, as Morgan State will play RTC the Hawks (9-17, 7-11) in a quarterfinal contest at 3 p.m. Thursday.

Morgan State (11-15, 11-7), picked to finished seventh in the preseason, finished third in the MEAC and will be the No. 3 seed. The Bears completed a season sweep of the Hawks, who will be seeded sixth.

Ron Van Hook came off the bench to lead Morgan State with 17 points, and Jimmy Fields and Doug Qualls each added 13.

"I thought we didn't play well," said Morgan State coach Chris Fuller, whose team was 7-3 at BCCC this season. "We didn't defend well today, and that's what's been carrying us through. But we did enough to win the game."

The Bears trailed 36-33 at halftime, before Van Hook sparked a 17-4 run, scoring six, helping Morgan State to a 50-42 advantage with 13: 17 remaining in the game. The three-guard attack of Fields (five assists), Van Hook and Lorenzo Hutchinson (seven assists) opened the floor for Morgan in the second half.

The Hawks got to within 69-67 on a jumper by Joel Hoover (12 points) with 3: 51 left, but Fields made a three-pointer for a five-point margin with 2: 09 remaining.

A free throw by Hoover made it 72-68 before two free throws by Qualls were followed by a layup from senior Tremaine Byrd off a behind-the-back pass from Hutchinson with 55 seconds remaining.

UMES -- Cheek 2-7 5-5 9, Jones 8-17 3-5 19, Wright 0-1 2-2 2, Hoover 5-7 1-2 12, Conway 6-13 4-6 17, Reynolds 1-3 3-4 5, Oxidus 0-1 0-0 0, Christian 3-6 3-3 9. Totals 25-55 21-27 73.

MORGAN STATE -- King 1-3 1-1 3, Canady 2-3 1-2 5, Byrd 6-16 0-0 12, Hutchinson 1-3 0-1 3, Fields 5-8 1-1 13, Rucker 4-8 0-0 11, McBride 1-2 0-0 2, Van Hook 7-10 3-7 17, Qualls 4-8 5-7 13, Dorcinvil 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 31-62 11-19 79.

Halftime--Md. Eastern Shore 36-33. 3-point goals--UMES 2-9 (Cheek 0-2, Hoover 1-2, Conway 1-3, Reynolds 0-2), MSU-- 6-20 (Byrd 0-8, Hutchinson 1-3, Fields 2-4, Rucker 3-5). Fouled out--UMES (Cheek 5). Rebounds--UMES 34 (Jones 8), MSU 33 (Hutchinson, Van Hook 5). Assists--UMES 10 (Hoover, Conway 3), MSU 18 (Hutchinson 7). Total fouls--UMES 19, MSU 17. A--1,000.

Pub Date: 3/01/98

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