Raleigh, N.C. – Christian Simmons scored a game-high 26 points and netted a pair of free throws in the closing seconds of regulation to lead the Mansfield University men’s basketball team to a 100-95 victory on the final day of the Shaw Tournament on Sunday, Nov. 10.
The Mounties (1-1 overall) eclipsed the century mark for the first time since defeating West Chester, 106-102 during the 2016-17 season. Mansfield shot 57 percent (32-of-56) from the field and 47 percent from three (9-of-19).
Mansfield had an aggressive offensive game plan from start to finish, getting to the free-throw line 38 times while converting for 27 points. The Mounties had three players score 20 or more points and outrebounded St. Augustine’s (1-1 overall) 31-27.
Simmons was able to get to the basket at will, scoring 16 of his 26 points at the foul line. The junior forward also pulled in four rebounds and dished out two assists. Trevor English wrapped up an impressive opening weekend with 23 points and nine rebounds, while knocking down 8-of-10 shots from the field. Garrett Cook hit seven of his 10 shots from the field with five of them coming from three. Jahmir Green finished with a game-high three steals and was in full control of the Mountaineer offense, dishing out a team-high five assists and scoring 11 points.
With the Mounties facing their largest deficit of the night, 85-76, Cook drilled back-to-back trifectas to close the gap to four with 5:19 to go. Cook and Green each sunk a free throw to bring Mansfield within two and Taylor Sweeney drilled a 3-pointer to give the Mounties their first lead in over six minutes, 87-86 with 4:08 remaining.
The Falcons would tie it back up at 89 but the Mounties closed out the contest on an 11-6 run and Simmons went 2-of-2 at the charity stripe in the closing seconds to put the game away.
The Falcons carried a 51-45 lead into the break thanks to 64 percent (20-of-31) shooting from the field. Neither team could create separation with both teams largest lead being six. Simmons led all players with 14 points at the half while going 8-of-8 from the line.
Donte Edwards led the Falcons offense with 20 points while knocking down 6-of-8 3-pointers. Jalen Gaddy and Gary Jefferson added 19 points each.
The Mounties return to Mansfield for their home opener at Marion Decker Gymnasium on Wednesday, Nov. 13 at 7 p.m. when they host Frostburg State University in non-conference action.