MARIANNA, Fla. (January 5, 2013) – NJCAA No. 3/FCSAA No. 1 Chipola College closed the first half on a 23-5 run and that proved to be the big blow in an 80-63 win over FCSAA No. 10 Tallahassee Community College on Saturday evening in the Panhandle Conference opener for both teams.
Chipola (1-0 PC) improved to 18-0 and is positioned to ascend to the top of the national rankings when the NJCAA releases its next poll on Tuesday. Tallahassee (0-1 PC) had its four-game winning streak snapped and is now 12-5.
A little more than a minute into the game, C.J. Washington knocked down a three-pointer to put Tallahassee in front, 3-2, but that turned out to be the Eagles’ only lead of the night.
Chipola quickly responded with six unanswered points to start an 18-2 run, ending on a basket by Kruize Pinkins at the 9:29 mark.
Down 20-5, Tallahassee finally showed some life. Alex Andrews hit a baseline jumper then knocked down a three-pointer, part of a 10-0 run that got the Eagles back to within 20-15 with 6:53 left in the half.
Chipola, however, gradually pulled away in the final minutes of the first half, scoring the final 11 points during the decisive 23-5 spurt and carried a 43-20 lead to the locker room.
Tallahassee could only get as close as 16 in the second half, despite outscoring the Indians, 43-37, after the intermission.
The Eagles hit only 5-of-28 from the floor in the first half and finished 23-of-70 (32.9 percent) on the night.
Chipola shot 47.5 percent (29-of-61) on the night and used its size and physical play to rack up 50 points in the paint and a 55-39 advantage on the boards.
Trevor McDade and Curtis Diamond scored 16 points each to lead the Eagles.
Tallahassee will return to play next Saturday when it hosts Gulf Coast State College in its PC home opener at the Bill Hebrock Eagledome.