Francis Marion hands Falcons first conference loss

FROM STAFF REPORTS

The University of Montevallo men’s basketball team suffered its first Peach Belt Conference loss of the season at the hands Francis Marion University, 60-49.

The Falcons’ 49 points is the lowest point total for a Montevallo squad since the 2009-2010 season when the Falcons scored just 40 points in a loss to Augusta State University.

Montevallo (12-3 overall, 3-1 in  Peach Belt Conference) shot just 36.8 percent from the free-throw line, which proved to be the difference in the game. Montevallo was led by senior D.J. Rivera, who scored 19 points, dished out four assists and had four steals. Junior Jonas Brown added 14 points and a pair of steals.

Junior Jeff Hefner led the Falcons in rebounds with six, while scoring nine points. Junior Travis DeShazior dished out seven assists to lead the team as well.

The Falcons struggled shooting the ball from all over the floor. Montevallo hit just 30.6 percent of its shots from the field including 16.7 percent from 3-point range. The Patriots were not much better hitting 34.0 percent from the field and 25.0 percent from 3-point range. The difference came at the free-throw line where the Falcons hit just 36.8 percent and the Patriots hit 74.2 percent.

Montevallo opened the game with a 10-0 run, but Francis Marion immediately answered with a 7-0 run to cut the lead to three. With the Falcons up 18-12, the Patriots began an 11-0 run to take a five-point lead that they would never relinquish. As timed expired on the first half the Patriots had pushed their lead to six points, 26-20.

The Patriots led the entire second half and the Falcons never pushed closer than six points.

The Falcons will return to action Saturday, Jan. 14 at 3:30 p.m. as they host Lander University in another Peach Belt Conference contest.