Mike Moore hit a game-tying three-pointer with 11 seconds left for University of Mount Olive, but Barton College's Danny Shand hit the game winner with one second remaining to hand the Trojans a 75-73 loss in Conference Carolinas men's basketball Tuesday at Kornegay Arena. JaQuan Blount recorded his first double-double of the season for the Trojans with game highs and season highs of 24 points and 10 rebounds.
Mount Olive (15-12 overall, 10-9 Conference Carolinas) trailed 71-64 with 3:25 left to play, but held Barton (18-9, 13-6) without a field goal for more than three minutes to climb back into the contest. After Blount's drive down the left baseline drive with 2:35 remaining made it a four-point game, R.J. Claypool sank a pair of free throws for Barton to give the Bulldogs a 73-67 advantage with 1:52 left to play.
Dontrell Brite hit a 15-foot fade away jumper from the right wing and Dominique Reed converted 1-of-2 free throws with 41 seconds left to make it a one-possession game at 73-70. Barton aided the Trojans' comeback with 0-for-2 trips to the free throw line on two consecutive possessions.
Brite missed a three-point attempt with 17 seconds left, but Reed kept Mount Olive alive with an offensive board. The Trojans swung the ball around the perimeter and Jamaal Matin found Moore beyond the arc at the left wing. Despite a hand in his face, Moore hit all net to even the score at 73-73 with 11 seconds remaining.
Shand, who sat out much of the second half after picking up his fourth foul with more than 11 minutes left, took the inbound pass and went the length of the court. His five-foot running jumper off the left glass rattled in with the clock at exactly at 1.0 seconds. Mount Olive was out of timeouts and a desperation heave was well short of the basket.
Blount scored Mount Olive's first four points on putbacks and added a pair of three-pointers to help give Mount Olive its biggest lead of the game at 32-23 with 5:29 left in the first half. After Barton pulled within five points, Tayon Gleaves' three-pointer with 2:25 remaining gave the Trojans a 37-29 advantage. Barton scored the next six points, but Brite found Reed underneath the basket for a lay-in off the glass just before the buzzer to send Mount Olive into the locker room with a 39-35 advantage.
The Trojans led by as many as five points in the second half, but back-to-back three-pointers by Jake Veasley highlighted an 11-2 run that put Barton on top 64-60 with 6:08 left to play. The Bulldogs led the remainder of the contest until Moore's game-tying three.
Brite finished with 15 points for Mount Olive, while Moore had 14 points and Reed added 13 points. The Trojans were 17-for-20 (85.0 percent) from the free throw line.
Veasley led Barton with 21 points, while Claypool added 16 points and seven rebounds. Shand and Matt Woods each dished out a game-high five assists.
Despite the loss, Mount Olive can still clinch a home game in the first round of next week's Conference Carolinas Tournament. Mount Olive holds a one-game lead over Erskine and Pfeiffer, and would earn the No. 4 seed with a win Friday over Erskine. But Pfeiffer holds the tie-breaker over the Trojans and a loss Friday would also give Erskine the tie-breaker advantage.
Friday's home game against Erskine marks Mount Olive's regular season finale. The Trojans fell 67-66 February 13 at Erskine after the Flying Fleet hit the winning free throws with 2.3 seconds left. Tip-off is 7:30 p.m. at Kornegay Arena.
Trojans seniors JaQuan Blount, Dontrell Brite, Mike Moore, Dominique Reed and John Wieland will be recognized during Senior Night ceremonies prior to tip-off.