FREDERICK, Md. - Junior guard Noah Valencia (Riverside, Calif.) poured in a career-high 45 points here Saturday in the MMI Tip-Off Tournament consolation game but it wasn't enough to lift the Bison to victory over Immaculata University at Hood College. The Mighty Macs hung on to win 81-80 in the tournament sponsored by Mid-Maryland Musculoskeletal Institute Division of the Centers for Advanced Orthopaedics.
Valencia made 10 of 15 shots from 3-point range and was nearly perfect at the free throw line (11-12). He fell two points shy of the school record of 47 held by Gallaudet Hall of Famer Kevin Milligan (Class of '67) set back in February 1965 when Gallaudet lost 114-112 in double overtime on the road against Washington (Md.) College in Chestertown, Md.
Valencia started and ended the game with a 3-pointer as he drained five 3-pointers in each half. GU held a modest 11-6 lead early on before the Mighty Macs (1-2) took the lead and went into halftime up 48-42.
The Bison led by two points, 75-73, with 2:47 left in regulation before Immaculata knotted the game at 75. The Mighty Macs pulled ahead 80-75 before GU tried to rally in the waning seconds. Freshman Corey Smith (Miami, Fla.) made a layup with 26 seconds on the scoreboard to cut the margin to three, 80-77. Smith finished with 12 points.
GU sent Asa Kitchen (15 points) to the free throw line with 17 seconds left and he only made 1 of 2 attempts to push the Mighty Macs lead to four. Valencia made his 10th 3-pointer with four seconds left but time ran out on the Bison comeback.
Valencia was named to the all-tournament team for his efforts during the two-day tournament.
Immaculata had four players in double figures led by Jordan Ambrose's 20-point game.
- Senior center Jamal Garner (Jacksonville, Ill.) scored seven points and grabbed 10 rebounds off the bench
- Valencia's 45-point game is the most by a Bison since Brandon McMillan scored 46 on Feb. 12, 2012, in a 95-90 win over Penn St.-Abington
- Randolph-Macon College won the MMI Tip-Off Tournament with a 91-61 win over Hood in the championship
Gallaudet returns home and will host the Battle of D.C. & Maryland next Saturday, Nov. 17, through Sunday, Nov. 18, in the Field House. The Bison will face St. Mary's College of Maryland at 4 p.m. while Hood takes on The Catholic University of America at 2 p.m.