Caldwell, NJ – The Concordia College Clippers men's basketball team and the Caldwell Cougars faced off in what ended up to be a thrilling ending. In the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) matchup, a late steal and layup by Concordia's Argelix Gil (Brooklyn, NY) would be the deciding basket as the Clippers won 75-74.
Concordia began the game hitting four straight three-point shots as their three-point shooting looked to be locked in early on in the game. The Cougars countered with three-point shooting of their own to tie the game at 14-14 with 13:30 remaining in the half.
The score remained close for much of the first half as the largest lead gained was only by five points in favor of Caldwell. A layup with 11 seconds remaining in the period by the Cougars gave them a five point lead at the half, 38-33.
The Clippers came out in the second half going on an 8-2 run to take a one point lead with 17:16 remaining. Following a layup by Caldwell, Concordia went on a 13-2 run led by junior Lavor Morris (Bronx, NY) to take a 56-48 lead with 11:18 remaining in the game. The Cougars clawed their way back to tie the game at 61-61 with just over seven minutes to play. The three-point shooting for the Clippers allowed them to regain their lead after back-to-back three-point baskets.
After a layup by freshman Tshyrad Oates (Union City, NJ) at the 5:43 mark, Concordia only made one more field goal in the closing minutes. This allowed Caldwell to cut into the Clippers' seven point lead and regain the lead at 72-71 after two successful free throw baskets.
In the next possession for Concordia, Gil was fouled with 42 seconds remaining and he sank both shots to regain the lead at 73-72. With time running out the Cougars had to score in their next possession and they succeeded after a jump shot by their leading scorer, Nikola Otovic.
With under 30 seconds to go, the Clippers needed a basket to regain the lead. Instead of holding for the last shot they went for a quick basket as freshman Dominique Spann (West Babylon, NY) drove down the lane. He made his layup but was called for the offensive foul which negated the shot with 20 seconds to go.
Full court pressure by Concordia allowed for a turnover as Gil stole the ball from Caldwell and went in for the layup with 11 seconds remaining to take a 75-74 lead. The Cougars attempted a last second shot for the win but missed as the Clippers held on to win, their sixth of the season.
Gil led Concordia with 20 points and eight rebounds while adding four steals, two assists and a block. Morris came off the bench to score 19 points while Norman Pope (Washington, D.C.) added 18 points. As a team, Concordia shot 40.3% (27-of-67) from the field and knocked down an impressive 14-of-29 (48.3%) three-point shots. The bench for the Clippers outscored Caldwell's bench 27-13 and also held 19-10 advantage on second chance points.
Concordia (6-7, 3-2 CACC) will be back at home for their next game as they will take on Chestnut Hill College on Saturday. The Clippers will look to secure another win as they take to the court of the Meyer Athletic Center at 3pm following the women's game.