WINTER PARK, Fla. (January 7, 2017) – Rollins snapped a four-game skid Saturday with a 59-47 win over Palm Beach Atlantic in Sunshine State Conference action. The Tars had one of their best defensive nights of the season, holding the ‘Fish to a season-low 47 points and just 39 percent-shooting.
Eric Castaneda led Rollins with 11 points on 4-of-6 shooting, including a 3-of-4 mark beyond the arc. Joey Galvis added 10 points and tied a career-best with six steals. Jeff Merton added nine points and now sits on 999 for his career. The junior also led the Tars with seven rebounds.
Bakari Warthen was the lone PBA scorer in double-figures, putting up 10 off the bench. Savanno Cooper added nine.
Rollins improves to 8-7 overall and 2-4 in Sunshine State Conference play while PBA drops to 7-7, 3-4 SSC.
HIGHLIGHTS AND HALF-BY-HALF ANALYSIS First Half l After PBA scored the first bucket of the game, Rollins rolled off eight-straight over the next three minutes to swing the momentum its way. Merton made it a 17-7 lead at the 12 minute mark and Sam Philpott converted a Connor Mckim steal into a bucket on the next possession to give the Tars a 19-7 advantage midway through the half. Both teams went more than three minutes without scoring late in the half as PBA closed the gap to 21-15 with 6:28 until halftime. Rollins would go on to take a 31-23 lead into the break.
Second Half l Rollins pushed its advantage to 41-27 on a Philpott putback with 15:39 to play. A Trey Koonce three-pointer at the 14:34 mark pulled PBA to within 11 before Rollins defense took over. The Tars allowed just one ‘Fish bucket for the next seven minutes and built a 48-32 lead with 7:57 left. PBA climbed back into the game over the next five minutes and cut Rollins lead to 52-43 with 2:12 to play. Free throws from Jack Fleming and a Castaneda three-pointer on back-to-back possessions halted PBA’s comeback and propelled Rollins to victory.
GAME NOTES • Rollins improves to 24-5 all-time against Palm Beach Atlantic. • Jeff Merton sits on 999 career points and is looking to become Rollins’ 39th member of the 1,000 point club. • Joey Galvis’ six steals tied a career-high set last year against Florida Southern. • Rollins held an opponent to a season-low 47 points; 13 better than the 60 allowed at Clark-Atlanta in the season opener. • Rollins held PBA to a season-low 23 first-half points. • Rollins outrebounded an opponent (32-31) for the third time this season. • The win moves Rollins to 993-776 all-time. • Tom Klusman improves to 661-389 all-time.
NEXT UP FOR THE TARS Rollins is on the road for its next two, starting with a trip to Nova Southeastern on Wednesday, January 11, followed by a game at Saint Leo on Saturday, January 14th. Both games tip at 7:30 p.m. Fans can follow the action live on the Geico Tars Sports Network at RollinsSports.com and locally on 91.5 FM WPRK.