Feb. 25, 2006
PENSACOLA, Fla. - West Florida played with pride in their season finale today in front of their home crowd on Senior Day. Unfortunately, it was not enough as Valdosta State got a tough road win, 83-80, before they play in the Gulf South Conference Tournament this week. The Argonauts did not qualify for the GSC Tournament this season.
West Florida played from behind the entire way, until they tied the game for the first time at 74-74 with 3:18 left to play. The Argos tied the game when Brandon Gordon and Marcus Grant combined for an 8-0 run. West Florida did not score again until there were 53 seconds left to play. Valdosta State's Jon Rogers made a pair of free throws, and Mike Crain made one of two to put the Blazers up, 77-74. Grant made one of two from the stripe, but Crain answered with a lay-up and a pair of free throws to go up, 81-77 with six seconds left to play. Donovan Redden kept UWF's hopes alive with a three from the corner. Herman Burge put VSU ahead, 83-80 with 2.9 seconds left to play. West Florida's Deondre Boynton hit the rim on a half court prayer that would have put the game into overtime.
The Blazers busted out to a 15-4 lead to start the game. West Florida trailed, 38-28 with just 57 seconds left to play in the first half. Maurice Thomas scored and Boynton finished a three-point play to close out the first half. The Argos were down, 38-33 at halftime.
West Florida was led by Grant's 18 points and nine rebounds. Donovan Redden added 17 points and four assists. Gordon went for 10 points and eight boards. Thomas scored 11 points. The Argos were outrebounded, 41-29. Valdosta State's Rogers tallied 23 points and 14 boards. Rogers was 11-for-12 from the line. Crain also went for a double-double with 22 points and 10 rebounds.
The Argos had advantages in points off turnovers, 26-13, points in paint, 32-24 and bench points, 44-16.
West Florida finishes their season with a 14-13 overall record and 3-11 in the conference. Valdosta State improves to 16-10 overall and a 7-7 mark in the GSC.
A special salute goes out to our three seniors, Matt Walker, Kashif Russell and Bruno Silva.