#TCCBasketball: Eagle men win in final seconds

Corey Douglas
Photo courtesy of Greg Rowland

Dustin Kent, Panama City News Herald, contributed to this release 

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (February 10, 2018) – JaQuan Morris' lay-in with 1.4 seconds left lifted Tallahassee Community College to an 81-79 win at Gulf Coast State College on Saturday evening. 

Tallahassee improved to 16-9 overall and 3-6 in Panhandle Conference play, with all three wins coming at the hands of the Commodores (15-11, 1-8). 

Tallahassee led 78-74 with 1:24 left but couldn't quite close the door on Gulf Coast State. The Commodores pulled within two, 79-77, then got the defensive stop they needed to have a chance for the tie or win. 

On Wednesday at Pensacola State College, the Eagles watched a five-point lead evaporate in the final 15 seconds, culminating with an 81-80 loss on a buzzer-beating three-pointer. 

Gulf Coast State didn't go for the win, but got three opportunities at the tie, finally converting on Will Robinson's putback with 4.4 seconds on the clock. 

Tallahassee didn't call timeout and the strategy paid off. Leon Freeman-Daniels immediately found Morris behind the defense and hit him with a home run pass. Morris did the rest, evading Robinson for the game-winning basket. 

Until the closing seconds, the Eagles had a firm grip on the game for much of the night. 

They jumped out to an 11-5 lead 3:27 into the game. The advantage was 20-11 with 11:02 remaining in the first half. 

The Commodores pulled with four (38-34) at the break, but Tallahassee opened the second half with a quick 14-6 run, keyed by four three-pointers and led 52-40 with 15:07 left in the game. 

Gulf Coast State didn't get as close as four again until the 1:54 mark. 

Despite the win, Tallahassee's already long odds at making the postseason got even longer when Pensacola State upset top-ranked and previously unbeaten Northwest Florida State College on Saturday, 87-70. The loss snapped the Raiders' PC win streak at 23 games, a mark previously established by Tallahassee from 1995-97. 

Tallahassee remained two games behind Pensacola State (5-4) and 2.5 games behind Tuesday night's opponent, Chipola College (5-3) with three games remaining in the regular season. 

Tallahassee and Chipola will tip at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday.