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Sterling Smith scores 14 as Coppin State holds off Bethune-Cookman 64-60 in MEAC 1st round


NORFOLK, Virginia — Sterling Smith had 14 points, Daquan Brickhouse made two game-clinching free throws with two seconds left and ninth-seeded Coppin State beat No. 8 seed Bethune-Cookman 64-60 on Tuesday in the first round of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference tournament.

The teams have met in the opening round each of the past three seasons — with Coppin State winning two straight.

Coppin State will play top-seeded North Carolina Central (24-6), the reigning tournament champions, on Wednesday in the quarterfinals.

Brickhouse finished with eight points for Coppin State (8-22), including an off-balance 3-pointer with the shot clock winding down for a 60-53 lead with 3:04 left.

Ricky Johnson led Bethune-Cookman (11-21) with 21 points. Denzel Dulin had 16 points with seven rebounds.

Bethune-Cookman trailed by nine points, its biggest deficit of the game, until Quintin Brewer made a hook shot in the paint and Mikel Trapp buried a 3-pointer to pull within 45-41 with 10:42 left.

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