That promising 12-3 start for Longwood has hit an extended rough patch.
The Lancers dropped another tight one on Wednesday, falling to USC Upstate, 69-64, at the Joan Perry Brock Center.
Over the final 11 minutes, the two sides traded the lead seven times and were tied four more as neither team could create much separation.
Trae Broadnax had a big second half for the visitors, scoring 11 of his 20 points, but Walyn Napper poured in 10 of his 17 after halftime for Longwood (14-11, 2-8 Big South).
Michael Christmas and Johnathan Massie also scored in double figures with 10 apiece.
Justin Bailey had 14 points for USC Upstate (8-15, 3-7 Big South).
USC Upstate used a 6-0 spurt, aided in part by a technical foul on Longwood coach Griff Aldrich with 3:16 to go, to take the lead for good.
“I’ve gotta own this,” Aldrich said after the game. “It’s unacceptable to get a technical with three-and-a-half minutes left. This is my fault. We preach discipline, and that was a very costly error on my part. I own that. This is in large part my loss. It went from a one point game to a five point game. All I can do is say I’m sorry to the guys and try to do better.”
After the Upstate scoring run, Napper hit a pair of layups to pull the Lancers within three, 67-64, as the defense forced a pair of late turnovers.
With 34 seconds left, Longwood had a pair of open threes refuse to go down, and USC Upstate finally secured the basketball to put the game away with two Broadnax free throws.