Washington, D.C. (December 16, 2013) -- In a back-and-forth affair with 10 ties and 15 lead changes, the Mount finished with a key defensive stand to earn a hard-fought 64-61 road win at American on Monday night at Bender Arena. Mount guard Sydney Henderson scored a season-high 28 points to lead all scorers.
With the Mount (4-6) clinging to a 64-61 lead, the Mountaineers' defense was able to prevent American (6-3) from getting off a shot on its final possession to help the Mount pick up its first true road win of the season.
The Mount, which trailed by as many as seven points in the first half, took the lead for good on a pair of Jody Chickey free throws with 2:13 to play for a 62-61 lead. The Mount then turned up the defensive pressure and forced turnovers on two of American's next three possessions before Henderson's runner in the lane with 52 seconds to go gave the Mountaineers the 64-61 win.
Offensively, the Mountaineers put together its second-best shooting performance of the season with a 51.1 percent clip on 24-of-47 shooting, including 9-of-17 (52.9 percent) from three-point range.
Henderson, who connected on a season-best five three-pointers, reached the 20-point mark for a Northeast Conference-best sixth time this season.
American also had a strong night on the offensive end with 25-of-62 shooting (40.3 percent) led by 25 points from Alexis Dobbs.
The Eagles led by as many as seven points with 5:02 to play in the first half on Dobbs' jumper for a 25-18 American lead.
The Mount kept the Eagles within striking distance and eventually took the lead with 1:04 to go in the half on Jacqueline Brewer's layup and free throw for a 29-28 advantage. Brewer finished with 12 points on the night.
After Lauren Crisler's make for American, the Mount drew up a play for Henderson, who capped the opening half with a three-pointer from straight on to beat the buzzer and give the Mount the momentum and a 32-30 halftime lead.
Rachel Mathews' layup on the Mount's first second-half possession gave the visitors their biggest lead of the night at 34-30.
Neither team was able to take control of the game throughout the second half. American led by two points at 50-48 with 10:26 to play, and more than four minutes went by before Ashley Christie's layup leveled the score at 50-50.
Next time American had the ball, Brewer picked off a pass at half court and took it the length of the court for a layup followed by a free throw for a 53-50 lead.
From there, the Eagles used a 7-0 run to take a 57-53 advantage with 4:03 on the clock.
The Mountaineers again staged a comeback fueled by defense and 4-for-4 shooting from the free throw line in the final 3:30 of the game.
The Mount closes the 2013 calendar year with a home game against Maryland-Eastern Shore on Saturday, Dec. 21, at 1 p.m. at Knott Arena. The Mount is 11-0 all-time series against UMES.
NOTES: The Mount is now 6-9 versus American in the all-time series... The win over American was the first for the Mount since Dec. 31, 1995... The Mount improves to 3-0 when leading at the half... The Mount won back-to-back games for the first time this season.