PEMBROKE, N.C. - Coker College lost their first game of the year when cross-town rival Francis Marion University scored 10 points in overtime, erasing a six-point deficit to defeat the Cobras 72-68, Friday evening (Nov. 20) in the opening game of the UNC-Pembroke Classic.
Francis Marion improves to 4-0, while Coker moves to 1-1 on the year.
FMU’s Robert Faulkner led the Patriots with 16 points, five rebounds, and three blocked shots before fouling out. Andrew Smith added 12 points and five rebounds, while senior guard Herman Mains added 11 points, including the go-ahead basket in the final minute.
Mason Ambler (Atlanta, Ga.) led Coker with 21 points and nine rebounds before he also fouled out. Vatrick Thompson (Columbia, S.C.) chipped in 15 points.
Thompson hit a pair of three-pointers to start overtime; giving the Cobras an early 66-60 lead. The two teams traded baskets giving Coker a 68-62 lead with just 2:21 left. Francis Marion then went on its 10-0 run with Mains scoring the go-ahead hoop on a layup with 25 seconds left and Kendrick Robinson sealing the win with two free throws with one second remaining.
Coker was down by as many as six in the first half before cutting the lead to just four, 32-28, at halftime. The Patriots were up 38-32 when Coker responded with a 9-0 spurt to reclaim the lead. The Cobras clung to a 59-54 margin with 1:42 left in regulation, but a 6-1 run by FMU forced the overtime period. Mains hit a three-pointer during that rally and Robinson tied the game on two free throws with 26 seconds left in regulation.
Coker will play host UNC-Pembroke on Saturday at 5:00 p.m. on the second day of the UNCP Classic.