Milligan Leads F&M to Thrilling Win Over Ursinus
LANCASTER, Pa. - Georgio Milligan stole the ball on an inbounds pass with 15 seconds left and made the ensuing free throws to help 24th-ranked Franklin & Marshall seal a 83-80 victory over Centennial Conference reigning champions Ursinus on Monday night.
Milligan went 7-for-8 from the line to finish with a career-high 21 points, giving the Diplomats (15-2, 8-2 CC) their first win over the Bears (9-8, 5-5 CC) since a 91-60 victory on February 5, 2005. James McNally and Mike Baker were in double figures with 14 points, while Anthony Brooks registered 13.
CC leading scorer John Noonan recorded 15 points in the first half and 10 in the second for a game-high 25 points. Noonan, who knocked down six three-pointers the last time the teams met, hit five of the squad's nine triples on the night. Remy Cousart added 18 points, five assists and three steals, and Matt Howell went 6-for-8 from the floor for16 points.
With 12:05 left to play, Noonan picked up his fourth foul of the game with Ursinus ahead 62-59. F&M took advantage of the time without the sharp shooter to grab its first lead since the 4:56 mark of the first half on back-to-back layups from McNally.
The visitors regained the lead, taking a five-point advantage after Howell's three straight layups, including consecutive back-door looks from Cousart. The Diplomats inched their way back, getting back the lead for good on a steal and fast-break layup by Milligan with 4:55 on the clock.
A steal by Brooks set up a McNally layup, before he drained a triple to give F&M its largest edge at 79-73 with 2:31 remaining. Noonan scored five straight points with his final three-pointer and a layup, while feeding Howell under the basket to cut the lead to 81-80 with 33 ticks left.
The Bears began to foul and Milligan missed on a one-and-one chance, but made the steal on an inbounds pass at the end line after an Ursinus timeout to get his opportunity for redemption at the line. Milligan made both and the Diplomat defense did not allow the Bears to get a shot off in the final 10 seconds for the win.
In the first half, each team took their turn in taking the lead starting with F&M. The Diplomats grabbed an early 8-5 lead and Ursinus let the three-pointers fly with one by Noonan and one by Cousart to reverse the lead to 11-8.
At the 12:50 mark, the game became a battle of Noonan and Milligan with each going basket-for-basket on the next five possessions. Steve Tolliver evened the score with a triple, before three layups by the Diplomats made it a 27-22 game.
The Bears went 4-for-4 over a two-minute stretch, knocking down two triples to take a 45-39 lead with 1:48 before halftime. Brooks and Danny Selig worked inside for a layup apiece to cut the lead by two at intermission.
F&M and Ursinus lived up to its reputation for field-goal percentage, shooting 50 percent and 53.4 percent from the floor. The Diplomats went 18-for-21 from the line and held a 34-26 edge in rebounds. F&M is now 14-0 when scoring 70 or more points.
The Diplomats return to action on Wednesday against Dickinson. Game time is 7:30 p.m.