Immediate Release: December 28, 2004
MIAMI, Fla. - Junior guard Andre Heard (Oklahoma City, Okla) exploded for a game-high 32 points - nearly half of Binghamton's team total - and the Bearcats (3-7) held on to defeat Colgate (3-8), 65-61, in the consolation game of the Florida International Holiday Classic Tuesday night from Pharmed Arena. Heard nailed 10-of-15 from the field and 9-of-10 free throws to help the Bearcats snap a four-game losing skid. He clinched the win with a crucial steal and four free throws in the final 26 seconds.
Heard entered the game averaging a team-best 12.3 points per game but had been held to just 12 total points in his last two games. He snapped out of his slump early though, leading a torrid Bearcats attack in the first half, when he scored 14 of his season-high total. The Bearcats hit nine of their first 12 shots and built a 29-10 lead before Colgate closed out the half on a 13-4 run to close the gap to 10 points, 33-23.
Colgate kept within striking range, however, throughout the second half, and whittled the deficit to two points three times in the closing three minutes before BU sank six free throws in the final 47 seconds to seal the victory. Binghamton led 51-42 with 5:40 to play before a 13-6 Red Raiders run made the score 57-55 with 2:18 left. Then with BU clinging to a 61-59 lead, Heard sank two free throws with 26 seconds left. He then stole the ball on Colgate's ensuing possession and dropped in two more
"My shot was just falling tonight," Heard said of his performance. "The coaches told me to take it to the basket, so that's what I was trying to do ... to get to the free throw line and not settle for three-point shots. They were making a nice run, but we just had to contain them. We made stops when we needed to. I'm glad we got the win."
One night after pulling down a career-high 12 rebounds, junior forward Sebastian Hermenier (Rockville, Md.) grabbed 10 caroms with eight points.
Binghamton is next in action on January 2, when the team will head to Boston for an America East encounter with Northeastern.
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