Men’s basketball falls in Fla. tourney

Allen DementSports Writer |

The Samford men’s basketball team dropped two close games last week in the Atlantis on the Mainland Tournament, hosted by Florida Gulf Coast University.

The ‘Dogs battled hard against Toledo but fell short 82-69. Freshman undeclared major Clide Geffrard Jr. helped trim the lead to 63-61 in the second half after a four-point play.

Because of Samford foul trouble, Toledo benefited from 26 points from the stripe.

“They shot 40 free throws and they out-rebounded us by 14 in the second half,” head coach Bennie Seltzer said. “If those things continue to happen, it will be very difficult to win.”

The team struggled with fouls, committing 28 personal fouls against Toledo’s 19.

The Bulldogs dominated offensively in the first half and led 31-27, but fell short when the final whistle blew.

Geffrard led the Bulldogs with 24 points, going 5-of-8 from behind the arc. Sophomore undeclared major Raijon Kelly added 17 points, which was a season-high.

The Samford men also had a tough game against Alcorn State. The ‘Dogs lost in an overtime battle 65-61 in the consolation bracket of the tournament.

The team had a chance to win the game in regulation, but sophomore exercise science major Tyler Hood missed a jumper. The shot rimmed out from the left corner with 5.4 seconds remaining. The men headed to overtime tied at 56.

“If we’re going to win basketball games at the rate that we want to win, then we have to get a lot tougher,” Seltzer said.

In the overtime period, the Bulldogs sustained the lead early 58-56 from a jumper by Kelly but Alcorn State responded with a three-point play and took its final lead of the contest. After a hard fought game, the Bulldogs fell short when the buzzer sounded.

Hood led Bulldog scorers against the Braves with 16 points, including four three-point goals.

The men play next against Florida Gulf Coast at home tonight at 7 p.m.

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