FIT Defeats Lynn 78-72, Clinch 5th Seed In SSC Tourny

By  //  March 1, 2015

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Chris Carter Records Season-High 28 Pts.

Florida-Tech-Basketball-580-10

Chris Carter scored a season-high 28 points in Saturday’s sixth-point win over Lynn in Boca Raton. (Photo by Amanda Stratford Photography)

BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – Behind a season-high 28 points, Chris Carter led Florida Tech (16-12, 6-10 SSC) to a 78-72 upset of Lynn (18-8, 10-6 SSC) on Saturday at the de Hoernle Center. The game was the regular season finale for both teams.

Chris Carter

Chris Carter

With the win, the Panthers secure the No. 5 seed in Sunshine State Conference Tournament that opens on Friday, March 6 at Silver Spurs Arena in Kissimmee.

They will face none other than Lynn in the first round after the Fighting Knights received the No. 4 seed.

Tip-off between FIT and Lynn is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. on Friday.

In Saturday’s meeting, head coach Billy Mims and Co. overcame a 12-point second-half deficit in just over six minutes.

The game remained up for grabs until Carter found Isaac Spence for a layup with 2:12 to play.

Playing with the lead, the Panther defense tightened their grip and allowed just three points in the final 3:29.

The offense, meanwhile, took advantage of its opportunities from the field and free throw line to put away Lynn.

Billy Mims

Billy Mims

“Defensively, we were outstanding,” Mims said.

“We were down 12 in the second half and the only way you can come from behind is to defend. We got stops and made scores. Chris Carter was a beast and an All-American guard today. He didn’t care what they were going to do to him. Chris wasn’t going to lose his final regular season game of his Panther career. He fought his tail off. You have to love the effort he gave.”

Along with his 28 points, Carter contributed five rebounds, five assists and four steals, while playing all 40 minutes.

Corbin Jackson

Corbin Jackson

Akeem Johnson

Akeem Johnson

Corbin Jackson notched his 15th double-double of the season, scoring 14 points with 12 rebounds, four blocks, two assists and two steals.

Akeem Johnson also stepped up with 14 points, which are his most for a single-game since Jan. 10 against Tampa.

“It was a total team effort,” Mims said. “We played 11 guys in the game and 10 of the 11 scored. … They dominated us on the glass 45-32, but most of their rebounds came in the first half. They had 27 rebounds in the first half and 18 in the second half. We did a much better job of playing defense and rebounding in the second half.

“This was a game of runs. … We got down by 12 in the second half and that’s when I said to my assistant coaches that we may be done. … The time I felt like we could win was when we got it to three.

I turned to my assistants and said ‘we got it to three; it’s anyone’s ballgame right now.’ We just had to outplay them down the stretch.”

FIT outplayed Lynn indeed, outshooting the Fighting Knights 52-percent to 43-percent in the final 20 minutes.

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The Panthers also won points in the paint, second-chance points and bench points in the second half.

Chris Carter threw his team on his back, scoring 16 second-half points on 4-of-8 shooting and 7-of-7 from the free throw line.

Free live video and stats will be available throughout the tournament at SunshineStateConference.com

Panther fans can tune into Jim Mitchell and Paul Van Scott call Friday’s quarterfinals game at FloridaTechSports.com/live


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