ST. MARY'S CITY, Md. - The Salisbury University men's basketball team fell in its first Capital Athletic Conference action of the year 72-62 at St. Mary's College of Maryland, despite a late push in the second half.
St. Mary's began the game on a 6-0 run, but sophomore Charles Porter got the Sea Gulls on the board, driving left and making a layup for SU's first points.
After sophomore Gordon Jeter hit a free throw, the Easton, Maryland native stepped in front of a Seahawks' pass on the next possession, drove the length of the court, and found senior Conor Strickland on the left wing for a three-pointer to tie the game 6-6.
The Seahawks answered to score the next seven points for the lead, which they would hold for the rest of the half. Freshman Jordan Brooks drove the left baseline for a layup to cut the lead to 13-8, but St. Mary's continued to build its lead, which would reach 21 with 3:12 left in the period.
Junior Kyle Savercool found his range with two threes from the right wing, sandwiching a Jeter layup, allowing the Sea Gulls to decrease the advantage to 36-21 with the 8-0 spurt, but the Seahawks were able to regain the 21-point lead, 42-21, heading into the half.
St. Mary's carried its momentum out of the break, pushing the lead to 33 points in the first six minutes of the second half. However, Porter tallied a layup and free throw for a three-point play to spark the Sea Gulls.
Jeter followed with two layups; first grabbing a steal for the fast break, before Brooks would pull down an offensive rebound and find the cutting Jeter down the right side of the lane, decreasing the lead to 57-29.
SU then got hot from long range, hitting six threes in the final 10 minutes, beginning with junior Bobby Bates scoring his first points of the season. Strickland followed with eight-straight Sea Gull points on a layup and two shots from behind the arc at the top of the key, making the deficit 63-42.
Another Bates three got the Seahawk lead to under 20, and Strickland continued his hot streak with two more threes, cutting the deficit to only 15 with 3:57 to go, 68-53, as he led the team with 17 points in the game.
The Gulls continued to battle and chip away at the lead, and a final layup from Brooks got SU to within 10, but St. Mary's was able to hold on for the win. Salisbury outscored the Seahawks 38-15 in the final 14 minutes of the game.
Jeter posted a double-double with 11 points and 10 rebounds, while Porter also chipped in with 11 points.
Salisbury returns home on Saturday, November 6 for its next action, hosting Penn State University-Harrisburg in a CAC matchup at Maggs Physical Activities Center; the opening tip is set for 4 p.m.