CORPUS CHRISTI (ISLANDERS ATHLETICS) - Five players scored in double figures as Texas A&M-Corpus Christi held off a late charge from Southeastern Louisiana for an 80-75 win Wednesday night on Stripes Court at the American Bank Center.
Rashawn Thomas led the Islanders (13-9, 6-5) with 19 points on the night, but the big man had plenty of help. Jake Kocher and Kareem South each scored 16 while Ehab Amin added 15 and Joseph Kilgore 10.
It was the first time five Islanders scored 10 or more since the season opener against Our Lady of the Lake when six players accomplished the feat.
"I don't think we played our best basketball by any means and they had a lot to do with that," said head coach Willis Wilson. "But, I think we did make plays when we needed to make plays, we had some stretches where played really well. It boils down to us fixing some things. "If we can eliminate some of the pain we inflict on ourselves then we can really grow as a basketball team."
A sloppy first half saw a combined 19 turnovers between the Lions and Islanders. Coupled with cold shooting, the Islanders slugged out a 29-25 halftime advantage. In the first 20 minutes, A&M-Corpus Christi and Southeastern Louisiana shot just 35-percent.
That all changed in the second as both teams went off from the field, shooting over 50-percent on both sides. The Islanders were the better of the two, hitting 64-percent of their second-half attempts.
With 1:10 seconds to play, the Islanders led by eight but Southeastern Louisiana caught fire from beyond the arc. With a pair of threes to fuel the attack, the Lions cut the lead to just a single point with 33 seconds remaining.
It was Amin who had the answer as he stepped to the line and knocked down four consecutive free throws down the stretch.
Trailing by three, Southeastern had one last opportunity as Marlain Veal pulled the trigger with 12 seconds to play, but watched the big paw of Thomas swat his triple away. Kilgore collected the loose ball, tossed it ahead to Thomas who put the exclamation mark on the victory with a ferocious slam to ice the victory.
With the win, the Islanders climb above .500 in Southland play for the first time this season. The victory also marks the fourth consecutive win for the Blue and Green.
The Islanders head out on the road for a two-game swing, which begins Saturday at McNeese. Tip-off is set for 3:30 p.m. and the game will be televised on Root Sports.
(© 2017 KIII)