Union wins 75-59 at home against Bryan Men’s basketball
BARBOURVILLE, Ky. – The Bryan College men’s basketball team suffered a setback on Thursday night as they dropped a 75-59 Appalachian Athletic Conference contest to host No. 15 Union College (Ky.).
The loss moved the Lions to 9-8 overall and 4-5 in AAC play, while the Bulldogs improved their overall record to 10-6 and conference record to 7-2 helping Union stay in the mix with Montreat College (N.C.) (13-1, 6-1) for the top spot in conference standings.
Three Lions scored in double figures with Oteriah Lee and Brice Cusick leading the way as each netted 11 points, trailed by Caleb Tuck’s 10 points. Lee shot 4-of-13 and couldn’t connect on any behind the arc, but Cusick was efficient making 3-of-5, including 1-of-2 from the perimeter and 4-of-6 at the foul line. He also led the team with eight rebounds. Tyler Yoder chipped in eight points and six rebounds, Reagan Johnson grabbed four boards and posted seven points, and Justin Warner tallied five points and three rebounds. Four points were collected by EJ Bush, and three points were contributed by Terrance Scales to finish out Bryan’s scoring. Tuck was the Lion’s assists leader with three and also had a team-best two steals.
Even though neither team could get in a shooting rhythm, it was the Bulldogs who eventually rose to the top following 13 lead changes and five tied points in a very tight first half of play. Cusick scored down low at 15:44 to tie the score 5-5 and then showed his skill from three-point territory one minute later to help the Lions regain a 9-8 advantage. Union responded and took back control but wouldn’t be able to make the game more than a one-possession game. At the seven-minute mark, Lee and Johnson took turns scoring on back-to-back plays to give Bryan a 20-18 lead. The Bulldogs managed to counter as the Lions capitalized the next two trips down the floor, but Union would use a successful and-one play to tie Bryan 24-24 and then sneak past 25-24 and never look back. The Bulldogs knocked down a last-second three-pointer for a six-point cushion, 33-27, at the half.
Union was the first to score as the final period started, and the drained trey would give the needed drive for the Bulldogs to break off their chain and run for a double-digit lead, 39-29. An and-one by Lee and a make from Yoder in three-point territory limited Union back to a single figure lead, but in the 15th-minute the Bulldogs sparked a 6-0 rally which gave way to a substantial 48-35 lead. Bryan was unable to shake the difference as the Lions were outscored 13-2 over a four-minute span. The momentum helped Union to their largest lead of the game, 26 points, at 5:03 with the score 73-47. For the last three and a half minutes, Bryan kept Union scoreless and added nine more points but the damage had already been done as the Bulldogs won 75-59.
The Lions only shot 34.5 percent for the game and 31.3 percent from long, but the Bulldogs just slightly bettered Bryan at 39.7 percent from the floor and 35.3 percent behind the arc. Rebounds went the Bulldog’s way 41-33, including a 14-7 advantage on the offensive end.
The Lions get a break from conference play with a trip to the Royals of Johnson University (Tenn.) on Wednesday, Jan. 10, scheduled to start at 7:30pm.