Spartans Let Double-Digit Lead Slip Away, Fall to Toledo
EDINBURG, Texas – The USC Upstate men's basketball team owned an 11-point advantage with just over 14 minutes to play, but the Spartans were unable to hold on as Toledo rallied for a 75-70 victory Saturday evening inside the UTPA Fieldhouse.
The Spartans (2-2) pushed their lead to 11 at 49-38 when Ty Greene (Knoxville, Tenn.) sank a three-pointer from the wing, giving Upstate a double-digit advantage with 14:34 remaining.
Toledo (1-1) began to chip away at the Spartan lead over the next seven minutes as the Rockets closed the gap to just one point with 7:29 to play. The Rockets' 20-10 run saw the Spartans lead shrink to 59-58.
The Spartans were able to maintain the lead until the 3:03 mark when Toledo's Ryan Majerle connected on a three-pointer to put the Rockets in front, 65-63.
After Ricardo Glenn (Augusta, Ga.) sank one of two free throws, the Spartans trailed by just one (67-66) with 1:04 showing on the clock. On Toledo's next possession, Dominique Buckley connected on a triple from the left wing to push the Rocket lead to four, 70-66.
Trailing by three with 27 seconds left, Adrian Rodgers (Alpharetta, Ga.) was successful on his lay-up attempt from the right side of the paint. Rodger's bucket cut the Toledo lead to one (71-70).
After a pair of free throws by Matt Smith, Upstate had one last chance to tie the game. Greene took the inbounds for the Spartans, but lost control of the basketball at center court. Julius Brown grabbed the loose ball and scored the game's final basket as time expired, setting the final score at 75-70.
Three different Spartans reached double-figures Saturday. Greene led the way with a career-best 20 points thanks a 5-for-6 effort from beyond the arc. Torrey Craig (Great Falls, S.C.) tallied 12 points, while Fred Miller (Atlanta, Ga.) pitched in 10 points.
Toledo was led by Julius Brown (17 points), while Rian Pearson and Dominique Buckley scored 14 points each.
Upstate used a late 14-6 run in the first half to take a 38-29 lead into the locker room at intermission.
Upstate will battle Texas State tomorrow at 4:30 p.m. CT, before returning to Spartanburg, S.C. for a three-game homestand beginning Friday afternoon.