Falcons Defense Comes Up Big Against Palm Beach State


The Daytona State Falcons trailed for 33 minutes on Tuesday evening, but rallied defensively to defeat the Palm Beach Panthers (4-1) 56-48.

The Falcons were led by Tanksley Efianayi 13 points, 6 rebounds. Ayinde Sprewell added 11 points and 9 rebounds for the Falcons. Daytona State College trailed 37-42 with 9:32 left to play, when Rashaun Stimage left the game with 5 fouls. After two free throws, Palm Beach pushed the lead to 6.

That would be the last points they would score for the next seven minutes of play. Led by William Ransom (15 rebounds), the Falcons dug in defensively. They would not allow another offensive rebound for the remainder of the game.

While the Falcon's team defense smothered the Panthers, Efianyi and Sprewell went to work on the offensive end. They would account for all but two of the remaining Falcon's field goals, including a monster put back dunk by Sprewell.

Palm Beach closed the gap to five, from an Elijah Mays 3 pointer with just over two minutes remaining in game, but Maurice West's free throws with minute remaining were the last points the Falcons would allow Palm Beach. Daytona State out did their #5 national defensive percentage (32.2 percent), by holding the Panther to a stingy 16-52 from the field (30.8 precent).

"We grew up tonight. A lot of teams fold with nine and half minutes to go and one of their key guys leaves the game. But we rallied defensively and refused to give them the game. It's never going to be easy. That's a tough Palm Beach team, well coached," said Coach Ridder.

"This game demonstrated the total team effort, our bench gave us good minutes. I think we played Dylon the whole game, we just had to. Paris controlled the tempo at the end. Spree, Tank, and Will just carried us at the end. We'll enjoy this, but we have to get back to work. They're all going to be tough ones."

The Falcons travel to Polk State Thursday night at 7pm, returning home on Saturday to take on #3 Tallahassee Community College.