Morgan is no match for Fla. A&M, 69-56

Rattlers cap local sweep

center Hill shoots 8-for-8

College Basketball

March 04, 2003|By Christian Ewell | Christian Ewell,SUN STAFF

For the second time in three nights, Florida A&M's Terrence Woods was a terror from the outside against a Baltimore college, following his 36-point outburst against Coppin State on Saturday night.

But in the Rattlers' 69-56 victory over Morgan State last night, it wasn't Woods' six three-pointers and 20 points that did the most damage.

Center Jermaine Hill made all eight of his field-goal attempts in scoring 17 points, and the team got eight points and 10 rebounds from reserve O.J. Sumter to attain a sweep of its trip here for the second consecutive season.

Florida A&M (15-11, 10-7 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference) shot 50 percent in the second half, compared to 32 percent for Morgan State (7-20, 6-11), perhaps reflecting the disparity in what was at stake for the two teams.

The Bears probably will play Bethune-Cookman in the MEAC tournament's first round next week, but Florida A&M -- tied for fourth place with Coppin, Howard and Norfolk State heading into last night -- is looking to gain a bye into the quarterfinals as one of the top five seeds.

The Rattlers, who hit 16 three-pointers in downing Coppin in overtime Saturday night, appeared to be running away early. Sumter followed his own miss inside with 3:30 left in the first half, capping a 10-0 run and giving his team a 27-20 lead.

But the Bears charged back, using two three-pointers from Sam Brand and Stan Grandy as a spark. Only a missed free throw by Ronald Timus with 6.3 seconds left prevented a tie at halftime, as Florida A&M led 30-29.

With 6-foot-7 Douglas Sims its only big man of consequence, Morgan was too small inside, especially with the return of the 6-10 Hill, who sat out the final 11 minutes of the first half with foul trouble after scoring seven points.

Hill went back to work with two close baskets to give his team a 38-33 lead with 16:59 left.

"Hill is going to score if you don't put a body on him and you don't fight for position," said Morgan State coach Butch Beard, whose team was led by 11 points each from Sam Brand and Randy Dukes.

The Bears, who were out-rebounded 39-31, couldn't move closer after Grandy cut their deficit to 49-44 on a lay-in at the 10:31 mark.

"We're not the most gifted team," Beard said. "But it is our mind-set -- we're really weak, especially when it comes to adversity."

FLORIDA A&M--White 2-5 0-3 5, Wilkins 2-6 1-2 5, Woods 6-17 2-3 20, Zamore 0-1 0-0 0, Hill 8-8 1-3 17, Griffith 2-4 1-2 5, Henderson 0-0 0-0 0, Kelly 1-1 1-2 4, Ayodele 1-2 0-0 3, Cisse 1-6 0-0 2, Sumter 4-8 0-0 8. Totals 27-58 8-17 69.

MORGAN STATE--Sims 1-6 0-0 2, Dukes 5-12 0-0 11, Fischer 1-1 0-0 3, Andrews 3-6 0-1 6, Nesbitt 0-0 0-0 0, Barrow 0-2 4-5 4, Timus 1-4 1-4 3, Snipes 1-1 0-0 2, Grandy 3-4 2-2 9, Davis 0-1 2-2 2, Brand 4-10 1-1 11, Patrick 1-4 1-4 3, Kilpatrick 0-0 0-0 0, Pellerin 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 20-52 11-19 56.

Halftime--Florida A&M, 30-29. 3-point goals--Florida A&M 7-19 (White 1-2, Wilkins 0-2, Woods 6-14, Griffith 0-1), Morgan 5-17 (Dukes 1-4, Fischer 1-1, Barrow 0-2, Grandy 1-1, Davis 0-1, Brand 2-7, Patrick 0-1). Fouled out--None. Rebounds--Florida A&M 39 (Sumter 10), Morgan 31 (Andrews 6, Barrow 6). Assists--Florida A&M 2 (Wilkins 2), Morgan (Grandy 2). Total fouls--Florida A&M 19, Morgan 19. A--N/A.

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