JOHNSON CITY (Jan. 21, 2012) – While ETSU’s men’s basketball team struggled to make shots, Lipscomb’s Jordan Burgason hit nine 3-pointers and scored a career high 33 points to lift the Bisons to a 73-65 win over the Buccaneers in Atlantic Sun Conference basketball action Saturday afternoon inside the ETSU/MSHA Athletic Center.
A crowd of nearly 4,500 fans looked on as ETSU had its five-game winning streak snapped and dropped to 10-8 overall, 5-3 in A-Sun action. Meanwhile, Lipscomb improved to 10-10, 5-3 on the year.
“It’s a tough loss. We just didn’t play well enough to win,” said ETSU head coach Murry Bartow. “We didn’t have an answer for Burgason, and that was from the get go. They made some big threes when they needed them – especially late in the game. It’s hard to win when you aren’t shooting the ball well, and we didn’t shoot it well tonight.”
While Burgason and the entire Lipscomb team combined to hit 15-of-26 3-pointers (57.7 percent), ETSU shot just 37 percent from the floor for the game and only 20 percent (5-of-25) from 3-point range).
Even so, ETSU had its chances to win after going on a 17-0 run early in the second half which gave the Bucs a 51-44 lead after having trailed by 10 at 44-34. ETSU junior guard Jarvis Jones (Memphis) was the key to the Bucs 17-0 run, scoring 11 points during that run and finishing with a career high 18 points in the contest.
However, at that point Lipscomb hit four straight 3-pointers to regain the advantage at 59-56, and the Bisons never relinquished that edge the rest of the game.
Lipscomb’s 3-point shooting was the story of the first half as well, as the Bisons connected on eight shots from beyond the arc and shot nearly 70 percent from outside. Burgeson led the attack for Lipscomb, hitting five 3-pointers – which included the first three baskets of the game for the Bisons – on way to a game-high 15 points before the intermission.
The Bucs trailed throughout the first half and had gotten to within three at 33-30 before Lipscomb closed out the half with back-to-back 3-pointers to make it 39-30 at the break.
For the contest, ETSU had an impressive 24 offensive rebounds, took 18 more shots than the Bisons, and actually hit one more field goal for the game. However, the fact the Bisons had 10 more made 3-pointers negated any of those positive stats for the Bucs.
Along with Burgason, the Bisons got 17 points from Martin Smith, including two clutch 3-pointers in the final four minutes that helped lift Lipscomb to the victory.
For ETSU, Jones led the way with his 18, while senior guard Tommy Hubbard (Boston) posted a double-double with 14 points and 10 boards. Junior guard Sheldon Cooley (Tampa) pitched in 10 points in the losing effort.
Despite the loss, the Bucs still have a chance to move even with Belmont in the conference standings on Monday, as the Bruins invade the Dome at 7 p.m. For more on ETSU men’s basketball throughout the season, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the men’s hoops link.