Francis Marion nips Chowan at the buzzer

Published 9:22 am Thursday, February 2, 2023

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MURFREESBORO – Chowan was on the wrong side of a buzzer beater as the Hawks battled back from a 20 point deficit only to see Francis Marion connected on a last second shot to post an 84-82 win here Wednesday night in Conference Carolinas men’s basketball action.

Christian Koonce poured in 22 points, highlighted by his five, three-pointers on six attempts. Jay Estime scored 20 points. RJ Wilson collected a career-high 18 points and seven rebounds.

Chowan shared the ball with 20 assists on 29 made baskets. The Hawks shot 10-of-15 from deep in the second half.

The Patriots, who led 49-36 at halftime, extended that margin to 20 points (65-45) in the early stages of the second half.

Chowan patiently chipped away at that deficit, cutting it in half (67-57) thanks to a three-pointer and a deuce from Estime, a trey by Wilson, and two baskets by Donavon Martin.

Preston Le Gassick and Koonce continued to chip away at the deficit with a pair of triples. Estime hit a three-pointer before the Patriots pushed their lead to seven, 74-67.

The Hawks answered with a 9-2 run as Estime hit a three-pointer to spark the rally. Martin came up with a huge block on the defensive end followed by Daylan Askew hitting a pair from the stripe. Koonce then draised a three-pointer to tie the contest at 76-all with 2:34 remaining.

FMU scored four quick points before Koonce connected from deep with 32 seconds remaining. The Patriots hit a pair from the stripe prior to Koonce hitting a trey from the top-of-the key with 11 seconds remaining to even the score at 82-all.

The Chowan defense would force a contested shot from the right corner at the buzzer, but the ball found its mark the Hawks the loss.

Chowan (9-10 overall; 7-7 in league play) will look to rebound as the Hawks travel to Due West, SC on Saturday, Feb. 4 to take on Erskine in Conference Carolinas action. Tip-off is slated for 4 pm.