The Times West Virginian

Sports

December 2, 2012

Stith helps lead FSU past Bluefield

FAIRMONT — With 10 minutes remaining here Saturday afternoon at the Joe Retton Arena, Fairmont State point guard Malik Stith decided enough was enough and took matters into his own hands to help lead the Falcons to an 82-72 victory over pesky Bluefield State.

Stith, a transfer from St. John’s University, watched the visiting Blues whittle a 19-point second-half FSU lead to two before he took over. He scored eight of the Falcons’ 15 points on a crucial 15-1 spurt in a 2:26 span to help his team regain control of the game and improve to 4-2 overall and to 2-1 in the West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference with the victory.

“I probably felt a little pressure there,” said Stith, who finished with 16 points, 12 of which came in the game’s final 10 minutes. “We had built a big lead coming out in the second half and blew it. That’s not good. We want to extend every lead we’ve got.

“I just saw some open opportunities that I hadn’t seen throughout the game. When I saw a lane I just took it, went to the rim and happened to score the ball to help us stretch the lead back out.

“It’s my job to lead the team. It’s not really my job to score the ball unless I have opportunities and when I got them at that point I just tried to put the ball in the basket for us.”

Less than five minutes into the second half it looked as if Fairmont State was poised to blow Bluefield, a team which has now lost 30 games in a row dating back to last season, out of the gym.

Led by Isaac Thornton, who finished with 15 points, FSU opened the final half on a 14-0 run to extend its five-point halftime advantage to 19 at 52-33 with 15:36 left to play.

“Coach told me to stay aggressive and keep shooting the ball because I didn’t have a good first half,” said Thornton, who scored the first six points of the final half for Fairmont. “I just tried to be aggressive. My teammates looked for me, found me and had confidence in me. I just had to do it for the team.”

However, once Fairmont opened the 19-point lead the Falcons relaxed and Bluefield State made them pay. The Blues answered FSU’s run with an impressive 17-0 outburst of their own over the course of the next five minutes to close to within two at 52-50 with plenty of time remaining. That’s when Stith took over and re-ignited the spark in his team.

“Malik’s great,” said Thornton. “I don’t think anybody can guard him when he’s got the ball and going to the hoop. He stayed aggressive and sparked that run which was great for us. He’s very competitive and doesn’t want to lose.”

Once Fairmont re-established a 16-point, 67-51, lead the Blues could never get any closer than 10 the rest of the way.

For the second straight game Fairmont was led in scoring by senior center Isaiah Hill, who finished with 18 points, seven rebounds and three blocks. Fourteen of his points came in the first half.

“I just try to feed off of my teammates,” said Hill. “If coach calls a play for me I just do what I’m told and it works. My teammates do a great job of getting me the ball and finding me inside.

“We’ve got a group of guys this year who are all basically new and learning to play with one another. We’re coming along and we’re starting to get this defense thing down which is what the coaches are really stressing to us. We know we can score offensively, we just need to be better defensively and tonight I think we were.”

FSU also got a big second-half performance in the win from Brendan Cooper, who finished with 13 points, a game-high 12 rebounds and five assists. Ten of his points, 11 of his rebounds and three of his assists came in the final half.

“Tonight was the first time all year we’ve kind of struggled offensively,” said FSU coach Jerrod Calhoun. “We’ve been averaging 92 points. Finally in the second half we stopped shooting threes and moved our defense a little bit.

“Tonight we guarded pretty well. We only gave up 72 points, but we didn’t get quite as many transition points as we usually get and that’s to their credit because they got back in transition and took some of that away from us. Usually our offense isn’t the problem it’s our defense, but tonight I’m happy with our defensive effort.”

Bluefield, which fell to 0-5 overall and to 0-3 in the league, got 20 points and 10 rebounds from Vincent Rogers, 12 points from Johnny Uhegwu and 11 from Remar Brothers.

FSU will be idle now for 14 days. The Falcons don’t return to action until Saturday, Dec. 15 when they visit the University of Charleston for a 4 p.m. contest at the Eddie King Gymnasium.

1
Text Only
Sports
  • Arrest warrant out for WVU recruit

    West Virginia University’s newest men’s basketball recruit, Tarik Phillip, has an order out for his arrest in North Carolina, according to a story in The Dominion-Post, which said three Gaston County Magistrate office spokespersons confirmed.

    April 20, 2014

  • WVU baseball powers past Oklahoma, 9-5

    The WVU baseball team tied a season high with 18 hits to defeat Oklahoma, 9-5, on Saturday afternoon at L. Dale Mitchell Park.
    The win gives the Mountaineers their second Big 12 series win of the season and improves the overall record to 19-16 and 4-7 in conference play. Oklahoma drops to 25-16 overall and 5-7 in Big 12 play.

    April 20, 2014

  • Blue Jackets edge Pens, 4-3, in double OT

    Matt Calvert banged home a rebound 1:10 into the second overtime and the Columbus Blue Jackets earned the first playoff victory in franchise history with a 4-3 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday night.

    April 20, 2014

  • Braun homers twice, rallies Brewers over Pirates, 8-7

    Ryan Braun hit two homers, including a two-run shot with two outs in the ninth inning that sent the Milwaukee Brewers over the Pittsburgh Pirates 8-7 Saturday night.
    Braun has five home runs this season after being suspended for the last 65 games of 2013 following Major League Baseball’s investigation into the Biogenesis drug scandal.

    April 20, 2014

  • NMHS #14 hit.jpg North Marion goes 2-for-2; Fairmont Senior 0-for-2 in tournament

    A day after an 11-0 mercy-rule victory at Philip Barbour, the North Marion Huskies were at it again.
    Chelsi Latocha threw three no-hit innings, Shelby King drove in five runs in the first inning and the Huskies rolled to a 20-0 victory over the winless Fairmont Senior Polar Bears in the Diamond Dawg Tournament at North Marion High School.

    April 19, 2014 6 Photos

  • Brewers’ Lohse beats Pirates again

    Kyle Lohse pitched effectively into the seventh inning, Carlos Gomez homered and the Milwaukee Brewers beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 5-3 Friday night.
    Lohse (3-1) improved to 11-2 in his career against the Pirates, allowing one earned run in a win against them for the second time in six days.

    April 19, 2014

  • Bucs trade for Mets’ Ike Davis

    The New York Mets traded slumping first baseman Ike Davis to the Pittsburgh Pirates on Friday night, parting ways with a power hitter who proved to be too inconsistent at the plate.
    Pittsburgh sent minor league right-hander Zack Thornton and a player to be named to New York for the 27-year-old Davis.

    April 19, 2014

  • Penguins wary of Blue Jackets after Game 1 escape

    Sidney Crosby is used to the attention. It comes with the territory when you’re the best hockey player in the world.
    Still, the Pittsburgh Penguins star knows the spotlight becomes more acute in the Stanley Cup playoffs.

    April 19, 2014

  • Tori Postlewait front.jpg East’s Postlewait, North’s Latocha toss no-hitters

    Tori Postlewait made a deal with her great-uncle, Kenny Carpenter, before her freshman season.
    If the Bees’ pitcher tossed a no-hitter, Carpenter promised to give her $20.
    Well, it took four years, but it’s finally time for Postlewait’s great-uncle to pay up.

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • East tennis splits with Polar Bears

    Fairmont Senior and East Fairmont split a pair of tennis matches Thursday, with Fairmont Senior winning the boys’ match and East Fairmont taking the girls’ competition.
    In the Bees’ 6-1 girls’ victory, Cara Laswell took second singles, 8-2. Erica Gorman won third singles, 8-1. And Carrington Reese won fourth singles, 8-3.

    April 18, 2014

Featured Ads
NDN Sports
House Ads
NCAA Breaking News
NCAA Photos