No. 12 Florida Southern holds off Merrimack College

Mocs move to 4-0 on the season

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Brett Hanson dribbles down the court in the 90-84 win over Merrimack College on November 23, 2018 in Jenkins Fieldhouse.

Reems Landreth

Brett Hanson led the Mocs from start to finish as the No. 12 Florida Southern Moccasins defeated the Merrimack Warriors 90-84 at the Terrace Hotel Thanksgiving Classic in Jenkins Field House on Nov. 23.

Hanson (30 pts), Ben Marello (14 pts), Slinky Jones (15 pts) and Jonathon Lawton (17 pts) all scored in double digits in tonight’s win. Hanson’s 30 points set a new personal best for him, surpassing his previous record of 29 points.

Merrimack started the game on a 12-4 run in the first four minutes before Brett Hanson and Jonathon Lawton clawed the Mocs back to take the lead (13-12) with 15:01 left in the first half.

Hanson scored his 1,000 career point for the Moccasins with 12:41 left in the first half (18-15) and becomes the 42nd player to do so at Florida Southern.

Head coach Mike Donnelly said that he was excited to be a part of Hanson’s journey over the next two years as he reached the 1,000 point milestone just four games into his junior season.

“It’s a great honor,” Hanson said. “All the greats who have come through here reached this point.”

The teams traded the lead before Florida Southern went on a 20-3 run over the last 6:19 to end the first half 43-31. Brett Hanson led the Mocs with 17 points going 7 for 10 from the field.

“I think I was just more active,” Hanson said. “I got myself going on the defensive end first and the offense kinda just picked as I was going.”

The Mocs started the second half the same way as the first as the Warriors put on a 10-2 run to bring it back to within 2 points after four minutes (45-43). Merrimack overcame the halftime deficit to tie the game at 51 with 13:38 left before Florida Southern regained the lead and went up by 11 (67-56) with 9:02 left.

The lead never dipped below 4 points as the Moccasins kept control of the game as the clock dwindled down. The Mocs ended the game with a 6 point lead marking their fourth win of the season and second against a Northeast 10 conference opponent.

Florida Southern will take on Stonehill College tomorrow at 7:30 p.m. in Jenkins Field House in the final game of the Terrace Hotel Thanksgiving Classic. The game will be preceded by the dedication of the Streamline Sale Arena at Jenkins Field House.

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