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Vivican and Adelphi capture ECC tournament title!!

Posted Monday, March 05, 2007 by website

Bridgeport, CT - Kimani Blaize (Brooklyn, N.Y.) scored 27 points, including converting two free throws with five seconds left to seal a 61-58 victory over #3 C.W. Post in the East Coast Conference (ECC) tournament final. The win gives Adelphi a second straight ECC tournament championship, an automatic berth in the NCAA Division II tournament and raises the Panthers record to 18-12 overall. The Pioneers fall to 18-11 with the loss.

Adelphi held a 12-5 lead just five minutes in, getting nine of its 12 points on three-pointers and a Sky Khaleel (Queens, N.Y.) bucket at the 13:22 mark gave the Panthers a nine point lead, 14-5. However, the Pioneers responded with a 9-0 run, knotting the game at 14 apiece on a Jonathan Schmidt lay-up.

C.W. Post took its first lead of the game, 17-16, with 8:13 remaining in the first half on a Raul Mercedes three-pointer and found themselves ahead 20-18 with just over five minutes to play in the first. But, Adelphi closed the half on a 10-4 run, thanks in part to five points from Blaize to enter the locker room with a 28-22 advantage.

Mercedes gave the Pioneers their first lead of the second half, 35-34, on two made free throws with 14:36 left in the game. At that point C.W. Post carried the momentum and held a five point edge, 49-44, with 7:26 remaining.

Adelphi battled back, using a 10-2 run to take what would prove to be the lead for the final time, 54-51 on a Thomas Paul (Plainview, N.Y.) three-pointer. Blaize would seal the 61-58 win, converting two free throws with just five seconds on the clock.

Schmidt led the Pioneers with 18 points, while Kenny Burkes chipped in 12 and Mercedes scored 11 and pulled down eight rebounds.

Blaize led the way for Adelphi with a game-high 27 points, making 10 of 11 free throw attempts. Mike Mosby (Lake Ronkonkoma, N.Y.) added 11 points and eight rebounds.

The Panthers will return to action on March 10 when they participate in the first round of the NCAA Division II tournament.

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