Shorthanded Mingoes drop three games at Orlando Tournament

KISSIMMEE, FLORIDA: A shorthanded University of The Bahamas men’s basketball team lost all three games at The Johnson University Invitation Basketball Classic over the weekend.

“It was a difficult trip and we expected it to be one we came over without our leading scorer and one of our top bench players,” Head Coach Bacchus Rolle said.

The team lost to host Johnson University (81-78) to open the tournament Thursday night. The team then lost to Pensacola Christian 87-72 Friday night and fell to eventual tournament winners Grace Christian 93-69 Saturday night.

Coach Rolle though did find positives in the tour that he hopes will pay off.

“What we gained from this trip was the total bonding of the team,” he said.  “And that’s going to pay off when we start competing again in the New Providence Basketball Association season.”

The Mingoes play The Pros 8:30 p.m. Monday at The A.F. Adderley gym.

Johnson University is located in Kissimmee—a suburb of Orlando.

University of The Bahamas – 69

Grace Christian University – 93

Justin Smith came out storming for The Mingoes to score 21 points including four three-pointers but that effort was still not enough against Grace Christian University Saturday night.

The Mingoes lost 93-69.

Antwan Bevans scored 14 points and Christoph McKenzie scored 11 points in the loss for the Mingoes who close out the tournament 0-3.

One of the most telling stats was that UB was outrebounded by Grace (40-13).  “We needed to be stronger in the paint,” head coach Bacchus Rolle said.

University of The Bahamas – 72

Pensacola Christian – 87

The UB Mingoes closed a 29 point gap on Pensacola Christian but just ran out of time Friday night.

Antwan Bevan and Ramon Dames each had 17 points in the 87-72 loss.  Bevans was one rebound from a double-double with 9 boards. Justin Smith also in double figures for the Mingoes.

“It was a difficult game for us,” Rolle said. “We came  out strong the night before where we played right down to the last second and for us to still be competitive here was a positive for us.”

Rashad Sturrup also put up impressive numbers with 8 points and 8 rebounds.

University of The Bahamas – 78

Johnson University – 81

Despite four players with double digits, the Mingoes could not close out against Johnson University at the J.U. Invitation Basketball Classic Thursday night. The Mingoes lost 81-78.

Justin Smith led the team with 12 points while Antwan Bevans, Rashaad Sturrup and Christoph McKenzie each had 11 points in the loss. Sturrup also had a double-double with 10 rebounds.

The Mingoes and Suns traded the lead 10 times in the game and Johnson led by as much as 8 points (67-59 8:43 in second half). UB was able to close the lead a few times and with 1.8 seconds to go trailed by 3 points.  After the made Suns free-throw, the Mingoes tried to pass the ball into their frontcourt for a chance for a final three-point shot but they were not successful.

“We tried to run a play to get the ball to Smith but they did a good job on defense to stop us,” said assistant coach Lavar Johnson. “We could also have executed a little bit better as well.”

Coach Johnson found positives in the team’s performance though.  “I loved that the guys showed us that they can stick together and showed a lot of energy despite us being shorthanded,” he said.

The Suns capitalized on fast breaks and scored almost twice as many points off turnovers (15 points to UB’s 7).