February 6, 2011

Northwestern State Edges Islanders on Homecoming

CORPUS CHRISTI - Horace Bond

posted his first career double-double with 11 points and 12 boards for the Texas A&M - Corpus Christi basketball team, but Northwestern State (14-10, 6-3 Southland) used a late 8-0 run to garner a 72-66 win over the Islanders (8-15, 3-6) on Saturday. Devon Baker scored 28 points for the Demons in the win.

The Islanders held a 63-62 edge with five minutes to play, but the home team's shooting went cold, and James Hulbin and Baker combined to score the next eight points of the game to build a seven-point lead for the visitors. The Islanders were able to pull within four with nine seconds to play, but Northwestern State hit a pair of late free throws to ice the win.

Four Islanders finished in double digits, led by Demond Watt's 18 points. Justin Reynolds (12) and Terence Jones (11) each finished in double figures, but the Islanders bench shot just 3-for-13 in the game. Watt and Reynolds each missed a double-double by just one board. William Mosley led all players with 13 rebounds and the nation's leading shot blocker swatted five Islanders attempts in the game.

Reynolds scored six of the Islanders' first eight points in the game's early moments. Texas A&M - Corpus Christi got significant contributions from their senior trio of Reynolds, Watt and Bond in building an 18-12 advantage at the 12:05 mark. After Northwestern State called a timeout, the Demons went on a 7-0 run to gain a one-point edge at the 10-minute mark.

From then on, the two teams went back-and-forth for the remainder of the half, and the Demons had the ball and a two-point lead going for the last shot. But the home squad seized the momentum, as Jones blocked a Baker shot, then raced down the court and threw down a thunderous dunk just before halftime to send the teams to the locker rooms deadlocked at 35-35.

Northwestern State gradually built a modest lead, climaxing at 56-50 with 11:07 to play in regulation. But the Islanders responded with a 6-0 rally of their own, all six points coming as a result of going inside, to tie the score at 56 apiece. The two teams went blow-for-blow until a Reynolds layup gave the home team a one-point edge with just over five minutes remaining, but the Demons embarked on their decisive run to close out the game.

Monday night, the Islanders will step out of Southland Conference action to face the Savannah State Tigers at 7 p.m. at the American Bank Center. It is the final non-conference game of the season for Texas A&M - Corpus Christi.