Hackensack, N.J. (February 18, 2017) – Sophomore guard Elijah Long registered a career-high 29 points as Mount St. Mary's University came back to defeat Fairleigh Dickinson, 79-74, in Northeast Conference men's basketball action on Saturday at the Rothman Center.
The Mount trailed for the majority of the second half, but with just under a minute remaining, Long worked his way to the paint and scooped one off the glass to give the Mount a two-point advantage. The Mountaineer defense forced a stop on the other end, and Robinson followed with a pair of clutch free throws to extend the team's lead to 75-71 with 28 seconds left in the contest.
After Earl Potts Jr. trimmed the Mount's lead to a pair with 18 seconds remaining, Long was fouled on the ensuing inbounds, but was unable to convert on either of his two free throw attempts as FDU grabbed the rebound.
After a timeout, Darian Anderson worked his way to the bucket and was fouled with seven ticks on the clock. After making the first, Anderson's second free throw, which was the potential game tying shot, rimmed out, but FDU was able to tie up the loose ball and was awarded jump ball possession.
On the ensuing play, Potts Jr. made a move into the paint, but solid defense from Mawdo Sallah denied Potts' potential game winner. After the play, FDU Head Coach Greg Herenda was called for a technical foul, giving the Mount a pair of free throws and possession.
Robinson knocked down both from the line to push the Mount lead to 77-74 with two seconds left. On the ensuing inbounds, Long found Chris Wray with a deep pass and Wray threw down a dunk at the buzzer to close out the 79-74 victory.
With the victory, the Mount improved to 15-14 overall and 13-3 in NEC play, while FDU fell to 11-16 overall and 9-7 in conference.
Long tallied his 29 points on 10-of-18 shooting, a 2-for-3 mark from downtown and a 7-for-12 clip from the line. The 29 points surpassed his previous career high of 27, set at UT Arlington earlier this season. Long also chipped in with six rebounds and five assists in the contest.
Robinson added 17 points and went 9-of-10 from the free throw line, while Sallah collected his third straight game with double-figure points, finishing with 12.
The Mount shot 51-percent (26-51) as a team and 31.3-percent (5-16) from long range.
Mike Holloway paced FDU with 18 points and eight rebounds, while Anderson added 17 points and Darnell Edge tallied 15.
The Knights took an early eight-point advantage in the first half as Anderson had his stroke going from long range, knocking down back-to-back three-pointers to stake FDU out to a 15-7 lead.
The Mount took its first lead since the opening bucket of the contest at the 9:07 mark following a 9-2 run. Long scored the first seven points of the rally before a layup from Ryan Gomes put the Mount on top, 24-23.
The Mountaineers opened their largest advantage of the half, 34-27, with 3:36 remaining, but were held scoreless for the remainder of the period as Fairleigh Dickinson scored the final seven points to tie things at 34-34 heading into the break.
Fairleigh Dickinson registered the first 10 points of the second half while holding the Mount scoreless for a six-plus minute stretch to jump ahead, 44-34. The Mountaineers answered with seven of the next nine points, including a pair of buckets down low from Sallah, to cut the deficit to 46-41 at the 12:19 mark.
Long scored nine straight for the Mount over a two-minute stretch to bring the team within a pair, 60-58, with 6:40 remaining. The Mountaineers then tied the contest at 65-65 a minute and a half later as Greg Alexander hit a three and Wray registered the game-tying bucket at the 4:31 mark.
The Knights answered with four straight to jump back ahead, but the Mount was able to tie things up at 71-all with 1:37 remaining following a pair of free throws from Long.
The Mountaineers then took the lead on Long's drive to the bucket under the minute mark, and never surrendered the lead from there as they went on for the five-point victory.
The Mount heads home to close out the regular season with a two-game home stand against LIU Brooklyn (Feb. 23) and St. Francis Brooklyn (Feb. 25). The contest on Thursday vs. LIU Brooklyn will be Jim Phelan Bobblehead Night as the first 700 fans will receive a free Jim Phelan bobblehead. Saturday's game vs. St. Francis Brooklyn marks Senior Day for the 2017 Mount St. Mary's senior class.