DSU comeback falls short in loss to Savannah

DOVER — Delaware State made a basket in the closing seconds of a tight game, but it wasn’t the shot the Hornets needed.

DelState’s late comeback attempt fell short as the Hornets lost at home to Savannah State 76-73 on Saturday afternoon. The Hornets have lost 10 games in a row and are still winless in Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference play.

The Hornets had a chance to tie the game late after the Tigers made a pair of free throws with 13 seconds left.

They worked the ball up the court but their first two looks were well-defender by Savannah State. Eventually Jonathan Mitchell found himself with the ball in the corner beyond the three-point line.

Instead of shooting, Mitchell drove. He made a layup to bring the Hornets within one, but with 2.5 seconds left there wasn’t enough time for the comeback to keep going.

“I wanted to get a three up,” said DSU coach Eric Skeeters. “We needed a three. These guys shoot tons of threes every day, I wanted a three to get it into overtime.”

Savannah State’s ensuing inbound pass was poked out of bounds. After a brief review, the referees ruled it went off a DSU player and it was still Savannah State ball.

The Tigers made two more free throws to seal it. The Hornets did have one more chance but Mitchell’s desperation three was well off the mark.

Delaware State went up 65-64 on Kevin Larkin’s free throw with just less than four minutes left. Savannah State responded with a 9-4 run to take control.

“They made plays and they finished down the stretch,” Skeeters said. “They made free throws, made plays, got to the rim.”

“We’re learning how to finish,” Skeeters added. “Trying to figure out how to win.”

Delaware State’s largest lead was 26-18 in the first half but the Tigers went up 36-33 at halftime.

Ameer Bennett paced the Hornets with 19 points as all of DSU’s starters finished with double figures.

Mitchell netted 14 points while Larkin had a double-double with 13 points and 11 rebounds.

D’Marco Baucum chipped in 12 points. Pinky Wiley followed with 10 points and hit a pair of go-ahead threes in the second half.

Delaware State has not won since Dec. 19 at Delaware.

Reach staff writer Tim Mastro at tmastro@newszap.com

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