Florida Tech Defeats Clark Atlanta 94-88 In Season-Opener
By Florida Tech // November 14, 2015
BREVARD COUNTY • MELBOURNE, FLORIDA – On numerous occasions, Florida Tech head coach Billy Mims has told his team it’s not always about who starts the game, but rather who’s on the floor in the final moments. In Friday’s regular season opener, the Panther bench responded with a collective 48 points, including a team-high tying 15 from junior transfer Jermohn Queen, to lift Florida Tech to a 94-88 win over Clark Atlanta.
“This is my 11th season at Florida Tech and 48 points may just be a record from our bench,” said Mims.
“This year, we’re going to win as a team, not with just one individual or a certain starting five. We showed our depth tonight and that’s something I’m impressed with.”
The energy was evident in the early going as Randy Echols put the Crimson and Gray up 12-6 on a three-point bucket roughly six minutes into the contest.
Shortly after, Queen entered and made an immediate impact in his Florida Tech debut.
The speedy point guard darted through the lane for a deuce and then stole the ensuing inbounds pass and dropped the ball off to Jordan Majors for two more to extend the Panther advantage to 31-18.
A Corbin Jackson two-handed flush, coupled by Clark Atlanta’s 29-percent shooting from the floor, and Florida Tech entered the halftime locker room with complete momentum up 46-29.
“We showed a lot of heart with our defense tonight,” said Mims.
“We rotated well and had guys diving on the floor for loose balls. In the first half, our defense helped us build a big enough lead that pretty much gave us the chance to win the game. We now have to find a way to sustain that effort over the course of the game.”
Florida Tech led by as many as 21 in the second half, but saw that margin dwindle to just nine following a three-point field goal by Clark Atlanta’s Derek Harper with 5:57 to play.
However, Queen and Jackson would ultimately finish off CAU in the final minute after some fancy ball handling led to a thunderous slam that brought the Clemente Center crowd to its feet on opening night.
Florida Tech had five players score in double figures in the victory, as Jackson posted his first double-double of 2015-16 with 15 points and 10 boards.
CAU forward Damien Enoch notched game-highs in both points and rebounds, with 23 and 14, in the losing effort.
The NCAA South Regional Tip-Off Classic continues on Saturday as Rollins and CAU begin play from the Clemente Center at 2 p.m. ET, followed by Florida Tech and Paine at approximately 4:30 p.m.