Florence, S.C. – Coker and Francis Marion went toe-to-toe in the final game of Zaxby’s Tip-off Classic on Saturday evening. In the battle of the undefeated, it was Francis Marion that came out on top, as the Patriots defeated the Cobras 68-59. With the win FMU moves to 4-0 on the year, while Coker drops to 3-1.

Both teams came out hungry for the win in the first half, with FMU taking the 36-30 lead behind 11 first half points from Kevin Clark. The Cobras were led by Mason Ambler’s (Atlanta, GA) 10 points and Lukas Varga’s (Pawley’s Island, SC) eight points. Neither team was on target to start the game shooting, as Coker managed to shot just 42.9 percent from the field, while FMU shot 46.9 percent.

Much like the first, Coker was unable to find the basket shooting just ** percent from the floor, while Francis Marion heated things up with a ** percent performance.

Coker fought hard and had their fair share of chances for a come back, especially with just 1:20 left in the game, Josh Poston (Myrtle Beach, SC) got a steal at half court, only to have Vatrick Thompson’s (Columbia, SC) three-pointer bang off the front of the rim.

Leading the Coker offense was Ambler with 26 points and nine rebounds, while Varga netted 11 points and Thompson and Poston each scored six.

For the Patriots, Stanley Jones and Clark each had a double-double with Jones getting 16 points and 10 rebounds and Clark netting 11 points, while grabbing 16 rebounds. Also scoring in double figures were Sam Smith with 13 points and Kendrick Robinson with 14 points.

Coker does not get much of a break before they head to the court again, as they host the Limestone College Saints in their Conference Carolinas opener on Monday, at 7:30 p.m. in the Timberlake-Lawton Gymnasium.

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