Spartans Speared by Tritons

Spartans Speared by Tritons

TAMPA, Fla. - The University of Tampa men's basketball team battled the Tritons from Eckerd College but came up short in a tough 81-71 loss. 

INSIDE THE MATCHUP:

Final: Tampa 71, Eckerd College 81 
Records: Tampa (12-4, 5-2 SSC), Eckerd (12-3, 5-2 SSC)
Location: McArthur Center | St. Petersburg, Fla.
All-time Series: Tampa leads the all-time series with Eckerd College with a record of 51-32.
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HOW IT HAPPENED:
1st Half | Junior Duke Shelton was the first player on the floor to score on a jumper which was followed by a tip-in by senior Austin Rettig. The Tritons quickly rallied to tie the score and then took their first lead of the game. The Tritons went up by eight early while the Spartans struggled to make baskets. Junior Marcel Robinson would end the Spartans three minute drought with a deep three pointer, bringing UT within seven points. Freshman Mekhi Biffle contributed a jumper to the Spartans score to close in on the Eckerd lead. The Tritons offense was dominant in the first half as they led by as many as 13 points with four minutes left in the half. But the Spartans rallied back and came within eight points with less than a minute on the clock. Robinson led all Spartans with eight points. 

2nd Half | Biffle was the first Spartan to score with a jumper, bringing the Spartans withing six points. But the Tritons hit a deep three pointer to go up by nine points again. The Spartans were scoreless for four minutes until freshman Alberto Moreno scored a layup. The Tritons offense continued to score and led the Spartans by 14 points with ten minutes left in the game. Senior Marcelo Ruediger came in off the bench to tally his first points of the game with a tip-in that would be followed by back-to-back three pointers by Biffle and sophomore Anthony Gamble. Gamble sunk another three pointer that would bring the spartans within nine points of the Tritons with just under five minutes left in the game. The Spartans made an effort at closing in on the Tritons advantage but were unsuccesful as they fell to Eckerd 81-71. 

INSIDE THE STATS:

  • Biffle led all Spartans with 16 points and five rebounds 
  • Robinson was the second leading point scorer with 14 points, four rebounds, one steal, and one block
  • As a team the Spartans shot 45.1 percent from the field  

UP NEXT:

Tampa returns to action on Saturday, January 11th when they travel to Lynn University to take on the Knights at 4:00 p.m. Live stats will be available through TampaStats.com.

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