Bridgewater rallies from 18 down, stuns Randolph-Macon

bridgewater eaglesBridgewater College overcame a 19-point, first-half deficit on the road Wednesday evening to stun Randolph-Macon, 76-73, in ODAC men’s basketball action.

The victory was the third straight for the Eagles, now 6-12 overall and 5-5 in the conference. The Yellow Jackets dropped to 10-9 overall and 6-4 in the ODAC.

The hosts jumped out to a 15-2 lead in the first four minutes and dominated most of the opening half.

The Yellow Jackets took their biggest lead, 41-22, when Montese Adams hit 1-of-2 foul shots at the 4:19 mark of the first half.

Bridgewater outscored the Yellow Jackets 10-3 during the remainder of the half to cut the deficit down to 12 points at the break.

After the Adams free throw, Logan Seacrist scored twice from in close and Kevin Saylor hit two foul shots, making the score 41-28.

Daniel Noe scored on a layup for Macon and Lamont Moore hit 1-of-2 at the line to put the Yellow Jackets’ lead at 44-28 with 1:30 left in the half.

Keonte Dennis tallied for the Eagles and Saylor added a layup with 20 seconds left, sending the Eagles to the locker room down by an even dozen, 44-32.

Seacrist opened the second half with a 3-pointer, but Michael Taylor scored five quick points to put the Jackets on top 49-35. Seacrist cashed in again from long range and Saylor added a driving layup to cut the margin to single digits, 49-40, with 17:46 left to play.

The margin was still nine, 56-47, when two buckets by Efe Balfour and a layup by Maalik Howard pulled Bridgewater to within three, 56-53, with 10:43 to go.

The Eagles inched to within two on a layup by Seacrist, but the Jackets responded with two foul shots by Moore and a layup by Taylor to go back up by six, 64-58, with 5:58 remaining.

Bridgewater then reeled off six straight points to pull even with 4:56 left. Jesse Case hit two foul shots and the Jackets misfired from 3-point range at the other end. A layup by Seacrist made it a two-point game, 64-62, with5:17 on the clock.

The Yellow Jackets turned the ball over when Moore was whistled for an offensive foul and Balfour powered inside for a layup to tie the score at 64-64.

After Moore hit 1-of-2 foul shots to put the Yellow Jackets back on top, Seacrist was fouled while shooting a 3-pointer. The Eagles sophomore made all three foul shots to give the Eagles their first lead of the game, 67-65, with 4:15 left.

The teams traded empty offensive possessions until Macon’s Grayson Midulla and Bridgewater’s Balfour traded hoops. Balfour’s bucket gave the Eagles a 69-67 lead with just 1:57 remaining.

Darryl Williams missed a 3-pointer for Randolph-Macon and Saylor controlled the rebound for the Eagles. Bridgewater converted at the offensive end on a layup by Balfour, making the score 71-67, with 1:08 to play.

The Yellow Jackets had two chances to cut into the Eagles lead, but each time Taylor missed with a jumper.Romello Crowell controlled the rebound after the second miss and was fouled with 33 seconds left. Crowell made the second of two foul shots for a 72-67 BC lead.

After Jamie Wilson made 1-of-2 free throws for Macon, Saylor hit two foul shots for the Eagles to push the lead to six, 74-68, with just 26 seconds left.

Taylor scored for the Yellow Jackets to cut the margin to four and a Bridgewater turnover gave the ball back to Macon with 15 seconds still to play. Wilson then knocked down a contested 3-pointer with 10 seconds left to make it a one-point game, 74-73.

The Jackets immediately fouled Seacrist and the Eagles big man made two clutch foul shots for a three-point, 76-73, lead.

Randolph-Macon had one chance to tie but Wilson’s contested 3-pointer from just past the top of the key was off target and Seacrist corralled the rebound to clinch Bridgewater’s third straight win.

Bridgewater controlled play in the paint as Seacrist, Balfour and Saylor combined for 56 points. Seacrist came off the bench to lead the Eagles with a career-high 23 points. Balfour added 20 points and Saylor scored 13.

The trio also led the Eagles to a dominant 41-24 edge on the glass. Seacrist and Balfour each grabbed nine rebounds and Saylor added eight boards.

In addition to winning the rebounding battle, the Eagles took advantage of their trips to the foul line. Bridgewater made 19-of-26 free throws for 73.1 percent while Randolph-Macon made just 11-of-22 foul shots.

Wilson led four Randolph-Macon players in double figures with 16 points. Noe and Taylor each scored 15 points and Moore added 14.

Both teams shot well from the field. Bridgewater made 50 percent of its 52 shots while the Jackets connected on 27-of-55 shots for 49.1 percent. The Yellow Jackets had a better night from long range, connecting on 8-of-21 shots for 38.1 percent. The Eagles had a subpar night from beyond the arc, making just 5-of-17 for 29.4 percent.

Bridgewater returns to action Saturday afternoon when the Eagles host Randolph College. Game time is set for2:00 p.m.

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