Saint Leo, Fla. (January 5, 2008) – Despite having all five starters in double figures, the Saint Leo men’s basketball team (6-5, 0-1 SSC) fell 95-88 in overtime to No. 4 Rollins College (11-1, 1-1 SSC) in the Lions’ SSC opener on Saturday afternoon at the Bowman Center.
Saint Leo got 23 points from guard Dusty Driggs (Jr., Sharpsville, Ind.), while Jordan Prais (So., Lakeland, Fla.) added his fifth double-double in the last six games with 22 points and a game-high 13 rebounds. Kyle Rowland (Jr., North Port, Fla.) added 16 points, while Jonathan Banks (Sr., Tampa, Fla.) scored 13 points and Quentin Cullop (So., Winter Haven, Fla.) chipped in with 12.
Rollins guard Kevin Hogan led all scorers with 28 points, as he made five three pointers and was also 13-of-16 at the free throw line. Jeremy Sharpe scored 18 points, and also made four three-pointers, while guard Jonny Reibel added a double-double with 11 points and 11 assists. Reibel scored nine of his 11 points in the overtime to lead to Tars to their 19th straight win over the Lions.
The game featured 13 lead changes and seven ties with eight of the lead changes coming in the opening half. No team led by more than seven points in the opening frame and the score was tied 30-30 at the half.
The second half was just as tight, as Saint Leo opened the frame with an 8-2 run to open up a six-point lead. The Tars led by six with 11:46 remaining, but Saint Leo put together a 16-3 run over the next 5:27 to take a 60-53 lead. Rollins answered with a 9-1 run to move ahead by one with 3:38 left in regulation.
After Banks had given the Lions a three-point lead by drilling a three with 1:55 left, the Tars sent the game to overtime on the strength of a three-pointer from Sharpe with 1:41remaining in regulation.
Banks again drained a trey at the start of the overtime, but Rollins answered with a 14-4 run to take charge. The Tars then went 15-of-17 from the free throw line in the final 1:24 of the game to seal the win. Hogan was 7-of-7 at the line during the stretch, while Reibel was 6-of-6. Overall, the Tars outscored the Lions 28-21 in a high scoring extra period.
Rollins outrebounded Saint Leo 39-35 for the game, and the Tars bench outscored the Lions’ reserves 22-2. SLU held the edge in the paint with a 34-20 advantage and the Lions also outscored the Tars 23-17 in points off of turnovers.
Saint Leo will travel to Tampa, Fla. on Wednesday to continue its SSC schedule against the Tampa Spartans. Opening tip is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. at the Bob Martinez Sports Center.