Coly leads Morgan St. past Coppin St. 68-64
BALTIMORE (AP)—Boubacar Coly had 13 points and 11 rebounds and Morgan State held off Coppin State 68-64 Thursday night to earn its first 20-win season in 32 years.
The Bears (20-9, 14-2 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference), who clinched the regular season title with their win over Delaware State on March 1, have won 13 of their past 14 games and finished the regular season unbeaten at home. The Eagles (12-20, 7-9) entered the game on an eight-game winning streak, but they could not overcome 14 turnovers to topple the Bears.
Marquise Kately scored 13 points, Rogers Barnes had 12 and Reggie Holmes finished with 11 for Morgan State. Tywain McKee scored 17 points, Robert Pressey and Mike Miller each had 10 for the Eagles.
Morgan State led by 12 late in the second half, but a pair of free throws by McKee with 1:51 left capped a 10-2 run by the Eagles and cut the score to 63-59. Miller converted both of his free throws and Coppin State trailed, 64-61 with 1:01 remaining.
However, Holmes made 4-of-6 free throws in the final 51 seconds to seal the win for Morgan State.
The Bears led the entire first half except for three possessions, and went on 14-4 run in the final 5:51 for a 34-24 lead at the half. Morgan State shot 13-for-25 (52 percent) from the floor in the first half and 25-for-50 in the game.
By winning the conference, the Bears clinched their first appearance in a Division I postseason tournament by qualifying for the National Invitation Tournament.