Men’s Basketball Takes Road Win at Drexel

Posted: February 8, 2008 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

The Mason men’s basketball team used a big first-half run to overcome a double-digit deficit, then broke open a tied game in the final seven minutes to win at Drexel,75-65 for the first time since 2003.

The Patriots won for the seventh time in their past eight games. The Patriots improved to 17-6, 9-3 in Colonial Athletic Association action. Drexel fell to 9-15, 2-10.

Will Thomas had 17 points and 12 rebounds, his 10th double-double of the year, tying him for the lead in the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA). Folarin Campbell tied a career high with 25 points, and John Vaughan added 13. Vaughan has scored in double figures for 15 straight games, the longest active streak in the CAA.

Drexel opened the game on a 9-2 run as Mason made just one of five from the field in the opening minutes while Drexel was four of six, including a Tramayne Hawthorne three-pointer. Later, Drexel built the lead to 13, 24-11, on back-to-back three-pointers by Scott Rodgers and another trey from Hawthorne.

Mason seemed to wake up after falling in that hole. The Patriots got to the line, fed the ball inside to Thomas, got scoring from Vaughan and utilized an effect press behind a four-guard lineup.

Seven straight points from Campbell gave Mason its first lead of the game, 28-26, capping a 17-2 run. By the time the half came around, Mason led 37-31 after holding Drexel to just one field goal in the final 7:57. That came on a Frank Elegar three-point play in the final minute, ending a 26-4 run.

Runs were hard to come by in the second half. Drexel would pull to within one and Mason would go back up by six. With Mason up 54-48, Gerald Colds and Hawthorne scored on drives to pull the Dragons to within two.

After Dre Smith scored inside for Mason, Rodgers answered with another drive. A pair of Randy Oveneke free throws tied the score at 56-56 with 7:02 to play.

The teams traded baskets before Campbell hit a three-pointer from the top of the key to make it 61-58 with 5:35 to play. Louis Birdsong followed with a pair of free throws and then a basket inside to put the Patriots ahead 65-58.

Campbell’s pull-up jumper with 1:44 to go made it a nine-point lead. Oveneke’s free throw with 1:27 to go ended a scoring drought of more than four and a half minutes, but it was too little too late.

Mason will next take the court on Saturday when the Patriots play at Old Dominion at 4 p.m. That game will be televised on Comcast SportsNet.

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