DUNDALK — Despite being unable to hold an 18-point lead and having a last-minute rally fall short, CCBC Dundalk ended up a winner due to Anne Arundel using an ineligible player.

The halftime score of the game between CCBC Dundalk and Anne Arundel Community College last week: Lions 41, River Hawks 23.

The final score: Anne Arundel 64, Dundalk 61.

The official score: Dundalk 2, Anne Arundel 0.

The River Hawks nobly self-reported the infraction after discovering one of their players was ineligible.

Interestingly, this was the third time this season a CCBC Dundalk loss became a win due to the opponent having to later forfeit the game. The Lions are now 10-15.

Basketball games are typically determined by scoring runs — whichever team maximizes its runs while restricting the opponent’s runs will win the game.

Trailing by 18 at the start of the second half, Anne Arundel opened the second half with a run that never really stopped.

The River Hawks scored on 15 of their first 24 possessions of the second half to take a 54-51 lead with 6:15 remaining in the game.

The Lions were outscored 31-10 during that River Hawk surge while making only four of 25 shots from the floor and committing five turnovers.

Dundalk shot mainly from the outside, but the scoring touch the Lions demonstrated in the first half had left the building.

Anne Arundel led by as much as 61-54 with 2:30 remaining in the game.

The Lions nearly pulled it out. Two three-pointers and a foul shot by Kaii Gilliam got Dundalk to within 62-61 with 11 seconds remaining.

The River Hawks then made two free throws, and a three-point attempt at the buzzer to tie the score bounced off the rim.

Anne Arundel’s rally was also assisted by free throws. The River Hawks were 12-for-17 at the foul line in the second half, while Dundalk attempted only six free throws in the second half, making four.

Gilliam finished with 18 points. No other Lion scored in double figures. Daniel Byrd scored nine points.

Dundalk lost at Harford Community College on Friday, 80-67.

Richard Hibbert and Mohamad Bundu each scored 16 points. KeiJuan Major had 15 points, and Tyshaun Walker scored 10 points.

Dundalk has a home game remaining on Feb. 23 against Potomac State College. The Lions do not plan to enter the Maryland JuCo League tournament or the NJCAA Region XX tournament.

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