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Friday, December 9, 2011



Date Released: 12/11/2011
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(BOWIE, Md. – December 8, 2011) Bowie State University overcame a 37-35 halftime deficit and rebounded to capture an 80-69 non-conference victory over the University of Pittsburgh-Johnstown. The 20th ranked Bulldogs improve their record to 5-1 on the year while the Mountain Cats dip to 5-4 overall.

“I thought we defended very well … We forced 25 turnovers and guarded really well in our half court man and full court pressure … that has been our focus over the last week and half”, said Bulldogs head coach Darrell Brooks.

So far this season, when Bowie State scores first and/or shoots 50 percent or better from the field, the Bulldogs win. Well, tonight was no different. Senior Jay Gavin stoked a 3-pointer right off the opening tip and BSU ended the evening shooting 50 percent from the floor.

Pitt-Johnstown’s Patrick Grubbs gave the Mountain Cats their first lead of the game at 4-3, but Bowie State used a 24-7 run over the next 7:16 to build a 16-point advantage. Back-to-back triples by Gavin put the Bulldogs up 25-11 at the 12:14 mark and a layup by junior Bryan Wilson seconds later gave BSU, what many thought, a comfortable lead.

However, the Mountain Cats responded in huge way. Jordan Miller hit a 3-pointer and Nick Novak followed with a short jumper to ignite a 26-8 run to close out the first half and gave Pitt-Johnstown a slim two-point halftime lead.

BSU senior Travis Hyman scored the first Bulldogs’ points of the second half and a Wilson layup tied the game for the third time.

Back-to-back layups by UPJ’s Jordan Miller gave the Mountain Cats their largest lead of the night at 46-42.

A pair of free throws by Bulldogs’ senior Darren Clark and another free throw by Gavin trimmed the Pitt-Johnstown lead to one with 16:37 remaining in the contest.

Grubbs pushed the visitors lead to four again (49-45) via a free throw and a layup.

The Bulldogs scored the next 14 points to regain the lead and gave Bowie State a double-digit advantage.
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Bowie State extended their lead to 13 with 5:57 left to play and cruised to the victory from there.

Grubbs; double-double of 19 points and 12 rebounds led the UPJ Mountain Cats. Miller had 17 points and a team-high six assists, while Novak added 17 points as well.

The Mountain Cats shot 48 percent from the field (27-of-56), but just 4-of-16 from three-point range. Pitt-Johnstown made 11 of its 17 free throws (65 percent).

The Bulldogs made 27-of-54 field goals which included 9-of-22 beyond the arc (41 percent) and 17-of-23 from the charity stripe (74 percent).

Bowie State was paced by Gavin’s career-high 26 points on 8-of-13 shooting from the floor to go along with five rebounds and three assists. Clark and Wilson also scored in double figures tallying 20 and 13 points respectively. Clark led the Bowie State on the glass, grabbing a team-high seven rebounds and tied his season-assists high with eight.

Looking ahead to Bowie State’s upcoming game at Mercyhurst, Brooks said, “We have to do a better job taking care of the basketball … we just turn it over too much and we have to be a little more patient executing our offense. If we get better at those things and get a little better with our defense, we’ll be tough to deal with as the season moves on.

The Bulldogs will now prepare for first semester final exams before returning to action in the Mercyhurst Invitational (December 17th-18th).
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