Trojans Hold Off Hawks To Take 89-86 Win

Photo by James Benson
Photo by James Benson

MOUNT OLIVE, North Carolina - The University of Mount Olive men's basketball team defeated the Hawks of Chowan University 89-86 in a close battle Wednesday night inside Kornegay Arnea in Conference Carolinas men's basketball action. UMO improves to 9-7, 3-5 on the season, while Chowan falls to 4-8, 1-6. 

Chowan grabbed the first points of the game but Micheal Brown responded with a three-pointer and Johnny Hughes III added a dunk to give the Trojans a five-point swing and the lead. The lead went on the change hands 10 times before UMO was able to finally gain control by way of a six-point run and led 21-16 with nine minutes in the half. Chowan was able to get the Trojan lead down to two with 3:11 but a 10-point run to end the half put Mount Olive firmly in control 43-31 at the break.

In the second half, Chowan was able to shrink the UMO double-digit lead, that had expanded to 12, down to five after an 8-to-1 run with 12 minutes to go and UMO led 58-53. After the Trojans were able to get their lead back to eight, Chowan pushed across eight points of their own to knot the game at 68. Jonathan Mebane broke a 70 all tie with 6:32 and sparked a short four-point run that gave Mount Olive a comfortable cushion until the final seconds. Darius Spragley converted a free-throw attempt and with less than five seconds to go Chowan threw up a long-distance three and converted it to take the score to 89-86 with .6 on the clock. UMO was able to inbound without a foul and let the clock expire to hold on for the win and eliminate the chance for a comeback for the Hawks.

The Trojans were led by Michael Brown with 18 points. Darius Spragley, Johnny Hughes III, Jonathan Mebane, and Cameron Robinson also added double-digit points with 17, 16, 15 and 14 points respectively.

The Hawks had five athletes in double figures but were led by Issiah Lewis with a team-high 21 points.

The key moment of the game came when Mount Olive was able to use a four-point run to regain the lead and use that to have enough of a cushion to hold off the Hawks last-minute comeback.

Mount Olive will remain at Kornegay Arena on January 11 when the Trojans host Lees-McRae College at 4 p.m.