Second Half Surge Propels Diplomats Past Hobart

Second Half Surge Propels Diplomats Past Hobart

Box Score

LANCASTER, Pa. -- Franklin & Marshall erased a 15-point halftime deficit to come back and defeat Hobart 85-84 in the championship game of the William Marshall Tip-Off Tournament Saturday evening. The Diplomats improved to 3-0, while the Statesmen fell to 1-1. Matt Redhead was named to All-Tournament Team, while Ignas Slyka garnered Most Valuable Player honors. 

The game went back-and-forth in the opening minutes of the game, before Hobart scored seven straight over a five-minute span to take a 21-14 lead at 7:43. F&M slowly chipped away and came within two, 23-21, but the Statemen quickly retook a nine point lead, 32-23, with 4:15 left to play. F&M stayed close and made it a three-point game, 32-29, on two free throws from Matt Redhead, but Hobart had another 7-0 spurt for a 39-29 edge with a little under a minute left in the half. Redhead hit a jumper with 28 ticks on the clock to make it 39-31 at the break. 

Redhead had 10 points, hitting 3-for-3 from the field and 4-for-4 from the line in the opening stanza and Ignas Slyka netted seven. 

Hobart increased their lead to 15, 48-33, early in the second, before the Diplomats put together a 13-7 run to come within nine, 55-46, with 13:58 left to play. The Statemen went back up 10 midway through the half, and F&M answered with a 7-0 spurt to come within three, 65-62, on a Slyka triple with eight minutes left to play. The Diplomats stayed within striking distance and after a 74-67 lead by Hobart, F&M had another 7-0 spurt and tied the game at 74-74 with 3:56 left to play. 

Hobart took a 79-76 at 2:09 and the Diplomats responded with six straight for an 82-79 lead with 22 ticks on the clock. Two free throws by J.C. McGrath with seven seconds left put F&M up four, 85-81, but Hobart hit a triple with .3 on the clock to make it a one-point game. F&M turned the ball over on the inbound and the Statemen had one final chance, but ran out of time. 

Six players scored in double-figures for F&M. Matt Redhead had 17 and Justin Kupa finished with 15 points and four steals. Ignas Slyka and Watida Mukukula both netted 13, Slyka added six steals and J.C. McGrath along with Matt Groll both netted 12. Groll also had seven boards. 

F&M returns to action on Tuesday when the Diplomats travel Gettysburg to open Centennial action. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.