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Senior Brandon Fox’s career game was overshadowed as the Wilmington University men’s basketball team dropped an 85-77 decision on the road at Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference foe Concordia on Saturday afternoon at the Meyer Athletic Center.
Fox paced the Wildcats (4-15, 4-5 CACC) with a career high 31 points while James Pee and Shaq Gaskins added 10 point each in the loss. The Wildcats shot 27-for-54 (50 percent) from the floor and 20-for-27 from the foul line, but Concordia (9-13, 5-7 CACC) converted 14 Wilmington turnovers into 24 points and 18 offensive rebounds into 23 second chance points to secure the outcome.
The Clippers were led by a quartet of student-athletes who scored in double-digits on the afternoon, paced by Brandon Whitaker’s 27 points off the bench. Lavor Morris added 18 points while Norman Pope poured in 17 of his own. Argelix Gil was the final Clipper in double figures, chipping in with 13 points. Concordia shot 28-for-60 from the floor, including 11-for-22 from three-point territory and 18-of-25 from the foul line. The Clippers outrebounded the Wildcats, 41-25, for the game, including a 18-8 performance on the offensive glass.
After the Wildcats got the game started with a layup by Fox only 13 seconds into the contest, the lead changed hands nine times over the course of the first half. After the Clipper’s Pope hit a three pointer to put the home team up by one, the teams went on the seesaw for the next eight minutes until Concordia took the lead for good.
Senior Isiah Mason hit a jumper with 12:26 to give the Wildcats a 16-15 lead, the final of the afternoon for the visitors. Pope put the Clippers back up two with another three-pointer with 11:51 to play in the first half, kick starting a 6-0 run.
A pair of free throws from Rashaun Rasheed and a layup from Fox cut the deficit back down to one point with 9:15 to play, but the Wildcats could never get back over the hump. From there, the Clippers used a 7-0 and a 24-10 overall run for the remainder of the first half to head into the locker room with a 45-30 lead.
The Clippers held onto a double digit lead for the first five minutes of the second half before the Wildcats made a run to get back into the thick of things. Down 16, Pee hit a three pointer and another layup to bring it to within 13 before Fox hit a pair of free throws to make it 52-41 with 14:57 left in regulation. Fox hit another jumper to bring the margin to single digits, but the Wildcats couldn’t get it any closer for the next six minutes.
Trailing 14 again, Fox started another Wildcat run with a pair of jumpers, before Rasheed converted his own jumper to cut it to a 61-51 deficit with 9:11 showing on the scoreboard. Gaskins put home back-to-back layups, the second with 8:07 to play to bring the Wildcats to within six at 61-55, as close as they’ve been since the 4:55 mark of the first half.
But the Clippers withstood the Wildcats run and quickly turned the six point lead into another 14 point lead as late at 1:50 to play, coasting to the finish line for the CACC win.
Fox shot 11-for-18 from the floor, adding 8-of-9 from the foul line for his career high 31 points. He also added six rebounds, two assists and two blocks on the afternoon. But, unlike their 33 percent shooting from three-point land coming into the contest, the Wildcats only hit 3-of-17 from down town on Saturday.
After a three game road swing, the Wildcats finally return back to the WU Athletics Complex for back to back home games next week. They first start with Holy Family on Tuesday for a 6 p.m. tip before hosting Nyack on Saturday for a 3 p.m. start.
Published: Saturday, January 26, 2013 - Bronxville, N.Y.