TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (November 2, 2012) - Gadsden State (Ala.) Community College handed FCSAA No. 6 Tallahassee Community College its first season-opening loss since 1993 on Friday evening, defeating the Eagles, 71-69, on day one action at the Tallahassee Democrat Tip-off Classic.
Tallahassee had won 18 straight season openers, and was 11-0 in those games under head coach Eddie Barnes, since falling to Polk State College to open the 1993-94 season.
After falling behind 19-9, Tallahassee surged to a 47-34 halftime lead. But the Eagles, for much of the game, were their own worst enemy, committing 22 turnovers and hitting only 19-of-39 from the free throw line.
Coincidentally, Gadsden State scored the winning points from the free throw line in the final 18 seconds. Collin Langley's free throw broke a 69-all tie with 18 seconds remaining. After missing the second shot, Tallahassee's Trevor McDade came up with the loose ball but, following a timeout, a turnover gave the ball back to the Cardinals.
Gadsden State's Kenric McCants went to the free throw line with seven seconds left but hit only one of two on his trip to the charity stripe to leave the Cardinals in front, 71-69. Tallahassee, however, was unable to get off a shot to either tie or win the game.
McDade finished with 19 points in his Tallahassee debut. Sophomore C.J. Washington, a UAB verbal, had 17 points and Curtis Diamond scored 10.
Tallahassee will continue play in the Tallahassee Democrat Tip-off Classic at 8:30 p.m. Saturday against Central Georgia Technical College.
Central Georgia Tech lost to Florida State College at Jacksonville, 76-60, also on Friday.