On an eventful day for Saint Leo Athletics, the Men’s basketball team matched up with the Panthers from Florida Tech in a pivotal Sunshine State Conference matchup. The Lions started off the game strong by hitting their first three shots, all three pointers.
The Lion’s beat the Panthers 96-84 to improve to 17-9 on the season and 9-5 in the SSC. Their next game is at Rollins College on Wednesday, Feb. 23, for their last road game of the season
After the 10 minute mark of the first half, the Lions got into rhythm and began to dominate. Junior Marcus Dewberry, Sophomore Tyreece Brice, and Freshman Carter Belling blended well together, and their energy powered the team. When those three are on the court and are playing at their best, it gives Head Coach Vince Alexander options in which he can use a variety of players to plug into the power forward and center positions to set different offensive and defensive strategies down in the post. Dewberry’s poise and leadership managed the first half, Carter was in his groove knocking down threes, but it was Brice who threw down a crowd-roaring slam in the final seconds that gave the Lions extra momentum heading into the locker for halftime.
The second half started right where the first half ended, with a Brice dunk. This time it was an alley-oop from Dewberry. With no signs of slowing down, Dewberry hit a three with the next possession, and after a Brice defensive shot block, the ball found Dewberry who made it back to back with another three, for 2 of his 6 in the afternoon. After that, comes off the bench and immediately hits a three, one of his 5 on the day. The Lions shot an astounding 48 percent from three point range and 58 percent from the field.
Belling missed a few key three pointers in the second half, but Sophomore Caleb Steward was there to clean up and contribute 20 points of his own.
Brice was a crowd favorite on the day with his two dunks but even more so when he hit two free throws in the final minute to extend the Lions score to 93 and rewarding the crowd with a coupon for a $1 pizza coupon to Little Caesars.
Dewberry was the star of the game. He scored 27 points, dished 10 assists, and grabbed 10 rebounds for his first triple-double in a Lions jersey. A leader by example, he puts them on his back at all costs and controls the game with excellence. In only his junior year, he has more in-game experience for the Lions than any other four players on the court combined, which only elevates Dewberry’s leadership. .
For Saturday’s game, the Saint Leo Lions supported the Play4Kay foundation, the Kay Yow cancer fund which raises money to support cancer research. A pink shirt promoting Saint Leo Athletics and Breast Cancer Awareness was given out to the first 200 fans who went to the game. Also, the Lions raised $321.88 and donated it all to the Play4Kay cancer research foundation.