Hampton used a 15-1 second-half run to overcome gritty Maryland-Eastern Shore and earn a 71-65 win Monday in Hampton, Va.
Hampton (13-11, 8-3 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference) won for the fifth time in six games. UMES (3-18, 1-8) lost its third in a row and fell for the 16th time in 17 games.
The Hawks looked poised to score the road upset early, going an 11-1 run to take a 30-20 lead with less than four minutes to play in the first half. UMES led 34-27 at intermission.
Hampton endured a nightmare half offensively, as the team shot 12-for-34 from the field, 2-for-10 from 3-point range and 1-for-6 from the foul line.
UMES kept the momentum going after the break and led 53-46 with 8:15 to play, but the Pirates charged back to take a lead they would never relinquish.
Forward Du’Vaughn Maxwell led Hampton with 17 points. Guard Ramon Mercado added 13 off the bench.
Guard KyRee Jones led UMES with 27 points, but it was fellow guard Hakeem Baxter who kept the Hawks in the game late. He made a layup, two free throws and back-to-back 3-pointers in a four-possession stretch that brought the Hawks to within 67-65 with 49 seconds to play.
However, Hampton guard Deron Powers made a layup with the shot clock winding down to increase the margin to four, and Baxter’s layup was blocked on the other end.
Both teams were in the bonus less than six minutes into the second half, which didn’t do Hampton any favors. The Pirates finished 11-for-27 at the line.
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