Ocala, FL - The Indian River State College (IRSC) Men's Basketball Team defeated the College of Central Florida on Saturday by a score of 84-79. Central Florida was ranked 7th in the latest NJCAA Region 8 Men's Basketball Coaches' Poll with IRSC being ranked number 9th in the state. In one of the most exciting games so far in this early season, it came down to sheer determination by the Pioneers. "We battled through foul trouble and a couple of injuries, but the guys pulled together and found a way to win," stated IRSC Head Coach Charlie Wilson.
The first half saw several lead changes with the score being tied 18-18 with 9:16, but Central Florida took a 31-26 lead with 3:03 remaining. Kimani Binder, sophomore guard from Orlando, quickly erased the margin with two back to back 3-point shots, giving IRSC a 32-31 lead. A couple of costly turnovers allowed Central Florida to tie the score 35-35 at the half.
The second half saw much of the same, with several lead changes before Central Florida gained a 60-52 advantage with 8:59 left in the game. IRSC continued to battle, and with another 3-point basket by Kimani Binder took back the lead 64-63 with 6:45 remaining in the contest.
Binder continued his hot shooting and built the lead to 80-73. The Pioneers never trailed again in the contest, but allowed Central Florida to close the gap to 2 points, 81-79 with 45 seconds remaining. IRSC was able to convert enough free-throws to preserve the lead and win the game by a score of 84-79.
Kimani Binder had a career high scoring 32 points on the evening and pulling in 6 rebounds. D.J. Winston picked up his scoring by adding 19 points and sharp shooter Jai Clark chipped in 11. Marc Syles (6'10" Forward) provided IRSC with solid minutes off the bench after starter Charlie Daniels fouled out of the contest. Syles pulled in a team high 7 rebounds and played solid interior defense in Daniels absence.
The win moved IRSC's record to 8-1. They will travel to Gainesville, Florida, where they will take on College of Santa Fe for a 7 p.m. start.