TOWSON, Md.--The Hood College men's basketball team (2-1) suffered an 89-77 setback to the No. 20 St. Mary's College (Md.) Seahawks (3-0) Sunday evening in the championship game of the Pride of Maryland Tournament presented by M&T Bank.
The Blazers were unable to contain senior Camontae Griffin, who poured in a tournament-record 51 points to power the Seahawks to their second consecutive Pride of Maryland crown. Griffin, who was selected as the tournament's most valuable player, connected on 14-of-23 from the field, including four triples, and 19-of-21 from the foul line.
Hood and St. Mary's engaged in a see-saw affair in the first half which saw five ties and five lead changes. Griffin buried a three-pointer to give SMCM its largest lead of the half, 40-32, with 4:55 to go in the period. But the Blazers outscored the Seahawks, 10-3, down the stretch and trailed by just one, 43-42, at halftime.
A J'Air Brady trey on Hood's first possession out of the locker room regained the lead for the Blazers to start the second stanza. Hood led by as many as seven (57-50) following a layup by Herb Bowen at the 13:33 mark. But Griffin single-handedly brought the Seahawks back into it, as he reeled off the next nine consecutive points in a span of 2:29 to put St. Mary's back on top, 59-57.
The lead would change hands four more times before James Davenport gave St. Mary's the lead for good with a layup at the 9:06 mark. The Seahawk advantage ballooned to nine with 5:01 to play in regulation and Hood got no closer than five the rest of the way.
Tyler Snoots recorded a double-double with 13 points and a career-high-tying 12 boards to go along with four blocks. Brady and Reco Siler tallied 18 points apiece while Brenden Straughn dropped in 11. Straughn and Tory Wilson represented Hood on the all-tournament team.
The Blazers were plagued by 26 turnovers which resulted in 29 Seahawk markers. Hood shot 55.6 percent from the floor but St. Mary's attempted 23 more shots and made six more than the Blazers.
Hood next travels to Carnegie Mellon University Saturday for a two-day tournament.