MIAMI SHORES, Fla. -- When Evan White scored on a bucket to beat the first half buzzer, it was a good sign. After all, the Buccaneers had a two-point lead and momentum going into the break.
But when the Buccaneers couldn't get stops in the second half, it was too much for what nearly became another stirring comeback.
Barry lost to Saint Leo, 61-56, Saturday in the final game of the regular season. It marked an end to White's career in Miami Shores on a day he gave the Buccaneers a lift in the first half. In the second half, Justin McCoy nearly bailed the Bucs out.
But the Buccaneers (12-16, 6-10 Sunshine State Conference) will have to turn their fortunes to the road to continue the season. No. 7 seed Barry opens up the SSC postseason tournament Wedneday at No. 2 Eckerd.
Saint Leo (16-10, 10-6) built a 17-point lead with 9:27 to play before McCoy scored seven of Barry's next nine points -- Chad Renfro had a layup at the 7:39 mark -- to pull Barry within 12. Bryan Van Cott and Renfro each canned threes, and McCoy drilled another triple of his own to bring the Bucs within, 58-53. McCoy canned another three with 1:37 to play to pull Barry within a deuce, 58-56, to cap a 12-0 run.
But Dominick Robinson and Marcus Ruh sank three out of four free throws, and the Buccaneers couldn't convert in the closing seconds.
McCoy finished with 15 points and five assists.
Barry's bench outscored Saint Leo, 23-6. The Buccaneers were outscored, 32-18, in the paint. Barry canned nine of 20 three-pointers, and held the Lions to 2 for 16 shooting (12.5 percent) from beyond the arc.
Yet when the Buccaneers needed stops, they didn't have an answer for Saint Leo's Trent Thomas and Marcus Ruh, who scored 20 and 17, respectively.
Renfro finished with nine points and three assists. White had seven points and four boards in 21 minutes. Damien Dwaine matched a career-high with 10 rebounds and three blocks. Jermaine Edwards had seven points, six boards and two blocks in 16 minutes.