Eagles let lead, game slip away

Published 12:00 am Thursday, January 26, 2006

Poor shooting from the floor and the free throw line came back to bite Fort Dale as the Eagles let a slim third quarter lead slip away

in route to a 45-38 loss to visiting Monroe (13-7, 3-2) Friday night.

&#8220I think this is the best basketball game I've seen in the past four years,” said Monroe head coach Rick Raines. &#8220It was a good game on both sides and I'm glad we were able to come back and win.”

The Eagles (5-15) held a 21-18 lead at the half and a two-point lead going into the fourth quarter, but shot 37 percent from the free throw line, including several key misses in the fourth quarter and let the Volunteers overtake them.

&#8220We had a lot of chances, we just couldn't make the plays at the end,” said Eagles' head coach Reggie Mantooth. &#8220We had the lead going in to the fourth quarter, we just didn't do much to increase it.”

The physical game was highlighted by two technical fouls on Monroe, something Raines commented on after the game.

&#8220I think we had some adversity to overcome and it wasn't just Fort Dale,” he said, referring to what he saw as questionable officiating. &#8220After we realized that, we settled down and started playing basketball.”

Eagles' sophomore Casey Weston led all scorers with 19 points with fellow sophomore Davis Watts adding 10 points. Senior Brady Newton had five steals.

Trent Davison led the Volunteers with 16 points, shooting 80 percent from the free throw line with Michael Norris adding 10 points and Josh Rotch chipped in eight points.

The Eagles are at home the remainder of the regular season hosting Morgan Friday night and Lee-Scott Academy Saturday before ending the season Monday with Sparta.