Posted: Nov 21, 2012 11:06 AM
Updated: Nov 21, 2012 11:14 AM
FULLERTON, CA -- A floater in the paint as time expired lifted Hope International University to a 59-57 win over Central Methodist University on Tuesday evening inside Darling Pavilion.
The Royals (4-0) fell behind by 10 points to the Eagles (5-3), 17-7, in the Hope Classic following an Elliott Black jumper with 7:09 left in the first half. Central Methodist led by as many as 12 points in the first 20 minutes when Melvin Tillman's bucket from nine feet out made the score 21-9, but Hope International closed the final 4:51 of the opening frame on a 15-0 run. Kris Rosales scored the final five points, including a three-pointer with time running out, to give the Royals a 24-21 halftime edge.
The Green and Black regained a four-point upper hand, 35-31, courtesy of a Tillman fastbreak layup with 12:33 to go in the contest, but neither team could seize control of the game. In the final 12 minutes, the game saw six ties, and neither team led by more than four points.
Trailing 52-48 with 2:49 on the clock, Black and Alex Barner hit back-to-back buckets in the paint to tie the affair. The Eagles again tied the game late after Robert Mason drained a three, making the score 55-all with 25 seconds remaining. However, Rosales ended the second half similar to the first, hitting a last-second shot to give the tournament-hosts the victory.
Rosales finished with 23 points. Orlando Collins added 17 points and eight rebounds. Jeremy Kilgore had nine points.
Tillman came up with 18 points, eight rebounds and four assists. Black tallied 12 points and seven rebounds.
Mason had nine points. Derek Kitch scored eight off the bench.
Hope International shot 47.1-percent (24-of-51) from the floor but only 7-of-15 (46.7-percent) from the free throw line.
Central Methodist made 41.5-percent (22-of-53) from the field and 87.5-percent (7-of-8) from the charity stripe.
The Eagles outrebounded the Royals, 36-30.
Central Methodist battles Vanguard University on Saturday. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. CT.