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Eagles hold off Palm Beach State, deliver Barnes' 250th TCC win
 December 14, 2013

OCALA, Fla. (December 14, 2013) – FCSAA No. 7 Tallahassee Community College overcame a cold-shooting second half and held on to defeat Palm Beach State College, 66-63, on day one of the annual Florida College’s Men’s Basketball Shootout, hosted by the College of Central Florida.

The win, Tallahassee’s (8-4) third straight, was head coach Eddie Barnes’ 250th victory as head coach of the Eagles. He now needs just eight wins to match Mike Gillespie’s total of 258 victories as head coach at Tallahassee.

Saturday’s win, like many on Barnes’ Tallahassee ledger, was a grinder.

The Eagles led 36-31 at the half and extended their margin to 43-35 early in the second stanza before enduring a cold stretch offensively. That allowed the Panthers to claw their way back into the game and eventually take a brief 47-46 lead near the midway point of the second half.

Tallahassee had an answer, however. The Eagles regained their shooting touch just enough and knocked down some key free throws to open a 60-53 lead in the closing minutes before fending off a last-ditch rally from Palm Beach State.

Tallahassee actually shot more free throws (21) than field goals (18) in the second half. The Eagles were 6-of-18 from the floor and 14-of-21 from the charity stripe after the intermission.

Earvin Morris led the Eagles in scoring with 20 points. Dirk Williams scored 15 and Cameron Naylor added 14.

Tallahassee will wrap up play in the Shootout on Sunday with a 6 p.m. game against Broward College, who defeated Hillsborough Community College, 87-69, on Saturday.

Sunday’s game can be seen on NJCAA TV.

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