Cobras Top Braves 59-53 At Holiday Classic
PEMBROKE –The visiting Coker Cobras shot a game-changing 20-of-23 (87 percent) from the free throw line during the second half to push itself to a 59-53 nonconference victory over UNCP in men's basketball action on Saturday at the English E. Jones Center in Pembroke.
The Braves (1-1) saw their team shooting percentage fall from 46.4 percent in the first half to 26.9 in the second while Coker (2-0) also out-rebounded the home squad by a 37-to-33 ratio.
UNCP found itself in foul trouble early in the second half and, in an effort to force some offense, had trouble getting shots to fall throughout the final 20 minutes. The Braves vastly improved on their number of turnovers from Friday with just 16 on Saturday (compared to 28 on Friday against St. Andrews) but an 8-of-13 effort from the foul line in the second half allowed Coker out-distance the Braves during the game's final minutes.
Sophomore George Blakeney led the Braves with 14 points on 4-of-8 shooting from the field while senior Marcus Heath added 12 points and five assists. Freshman Ben Jacobs led the team with nine rebounds while senior Nathan Priest notched three blocks and six points in 15 minutes of action.
UNCP will look to rebound quickly when it faces local rival Fayetteville State in a nonconference matchup at the Felton J. Capel Arena in Fayetteville on Tuesday. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.