Photo Credit – ESPN
In a game where the Monmouth Hawks never held a lead, the Flyers prevailed 73-70 after trying to give the game away for a second straight night. Scoochie Smith had a career night scoring 19 points and grabbing 8 boards while leading the Flyers to victory. The Flyers had a 16 point lead with 10:16 left in the second half but then Monmouth’s junior guard Justin Robinson had something to say about that lead as he started to heat up from behind the three point line. Robinson scored 11 points in the span of just over 2 minutes to bring the Hawks back to within 8. The Hawks closed the gap to as little as 1 by using a 20 to 5 run late in the half. With 4:26 left, the Flyers were only up 64-63. The game continued to be a back and forth affair and a one possession game until the 1:31 mark when Scoochie Smith stepped up and made a deep three to make it a 4 point Flyer advantage, 71-67. Kendall Pollard then made a layup on the next possession to make it 73-67 Flyers with only 59 seconds left. The Hawks answered with a three to cut the deficit to 3 and then had a chance to tie the game with 4 seconds left, but a three ball by Micah Seaborn clanked off the rim and Dayton prevailed. According to ESPN, Monmouth’s bench mob was a pretty vital part of this game as they kept cutting away to show the “cool” celebrations that the bench was doing after made shots.
The Hawks only shot 36.4% (20-55) from the field, 47.4% (9-19) from the three and 77.8% (21-27) from the line. Monmouth totaled 39 rebounds, with 12 assists and only 9 turnovers. The Hawks also managed 5 blocks and 3 steals. Monmouth’s bench mob didn’t account for any of these statistics because they were too busy dancing on the bench. Justin Robinson was the only reason the Hawks were even in the game as he put up 28 points on 7 of 15 shooting (5-7 from three). He also had 4 rebounds and 2 assists in 35 minutes. Redshirt freshman guard Micah Seaborn helped out Robinson a little bit as he scored 12 points. Seaborn only shot 4 of 12 from the field and really struggled to get into a groove all night. He also had 4 boards and 4 assists. Off of the bench, junior swingman Collin Stewart totaled 10 points on 3 of 10 shooting and big man junior Chris Brady also tallied 10 points on 5 of 8 shooting.
The Flyers shot 42.9% (27-63) from the field, but struggled to shoot the three ball well for the first time this year as they only shot 22.2% (4-18) from deep. From the line, the Flyers shot 68.2% (15-22). Dayton pulled down 42 boards while dishing out only 9 assists. They only turned the ball over 9 times, which is a season low. The Flyers also managed 5 blocks and 7 steals in the contest. Scooch, as mentioned before, had a career night with 19 points, 8 rebounds, 3 assists, and one steal in 33 minutes of playing time. Charles Cooke managed to have another solid game shooting 5-10 from the field for 15 points. He also tallied 9 rebounds in 32 minutes. Kyle Davis and Kendall Pollard each managed 12 points. Pollard is going to need to learn how to stay out of foul trouble though as he only was able to play 19 minutes because of it. Freshman Xeyrius Williams stepped up while Steve McElvene and Kendall Pollard were in foul trouble most of the game. He played 25 minutes and accumulated 4 points and 5 rebounds.
Just a quick note to Monmouth and ESPN, the Flyers do it better…
Monmouth will play Sunday against USC in the third place game of the Advocare Invitational at 12:30PM.
The Flyers will renew an old rivalry Sunday in the championship game of the Advocare Invitational as they take on Xavier at 4:30PM. The Flyers and Musketeers haven’t played each other since the Musketeers moved to the Big East in 2013.
Go Flyers! Beat X!
Alex Handorf ’17