Free throw shooting proves costly for Buccaneers

BRENHAM, Texas – The Blinn Buccaneers rallied back from a slow start, but in the end poor free throw shooting proved the difference against the defending Region XIV Conference champion Paris Dragons.

Paris defeated Blinn 59-56 Tuesday night at the Blinn P.E. Building, spoiling the Buccaneers' conference opener and evening their record to 4-4 on the season.

Blinn struggled from the outset, scoring just 12 points in the game's first 11 minutes. Paris led 35-22 at halftime, but after the break the Buccaneers bounced back. With 12 seconds remaining, Blinn trailed just 58-56. A Paris free throw extended the lead to three points, but the Dragons missed their second shot from the charity stripe, giving Blinn an opportunity, but the last-second 3-point attempt missed.

Blinn finished 13-of-25 from the free throw line and missed the front end of a one-and-one three times in the first half.

"We're a work in progress," Blinn (4-4, 0-1) coach Scott Schumacher said. "I thought we fought back, battled and gave ourselves a chance to win, we just came up short at the end."

Freshman guard Darrell Combs led the Bucs with 22 points while freshman point guard Donald Moore scored 17.

The Buccaneers return to action Monday when they host Lone Star College-Tomball for a non-conference game at 7:30 p.m. in the Blinn P.E. Building.