It took a miraculous shot and an overtime period for South Carolina State to take down the Rattlers, 63-59.
Florida A&M head coach Clemon Johnson recognized that the team should’ve made adjustments to win.
“What we had to do was come out of the gate and stop dragging our feet,” Johnson said. “They have to find a way to get motivated in the beginning.”
Senior guard Reggie Lewis emerged as the game’s top scorer with 20 points.
Senior Jomari Bradshaw was the only other Rattler in double figures with 12 points. Senior Jamie Adams, who leads the Rattlers (7-14, 3-5 MEAC) in scoring this season, went 1 of 12 from the field and finished the game with just two points.
The Bulldogs (8-13, 4-4 MEAC) maintained a lead and went into halftime up 31-23.
FAMU started the second half with an 11-8 run and tied the game up at 41 with 8:10 in the game. Bradshaw attributed the new wave of energy to Lewis.
“We needed somebody to step up and make big shots,” Bradshaw said. “Usually Jamie Adams is the one making big shots and the one putting the ball in the hole for us.”
With 22 seconds left, the Rattlers were nursing a 3-point lead, 53-50. But SCSU sophomore guard Jordan Smith gave the game new life, sending the game into overtime with a buzzer-beating 3-pointer.
Tied at 59 in the extra period, Smith secured the victory for the Bulldogs with his fourth 3-pointer.
Although the Rattlers lost, Lewis celebrated a milestone, breaking the thousand-point career scoring mark. However, he said was more concerned with his team and game rather than his personal accomplishment.
“Yes, that’s a great achievement, but I wanted to win the game,” Lewis said.
The Rattlers will be back in action Monday night in a double-header against the Savannah State Tigers.