NASHVILLE, TENN. – While it was the third game in six days for the Lipscomb University Bisons, the Bisons certainly weren’t lethargic Saturday afternoon against USC Upstate in Allen Arena.
The Bisons took the first lead of the game on a layup by Adnan Hodzic and extended their lead 17-8 at the midpoint of the first half to cruise to a 77-44 win over the Spartans.
“I liked our energy level,” said Lipscomb head coach Scott Sanderson. “We started the game out with great energy and we started the second half with a 15 point lead with great energy and that is what I like the most.”
Lipscomb held a 37-22 lead at half. Upstate opened the second half with a dunk by Bobby Davis before the Bisons went on 18-7 run to go up 55-31 with 12:36 remaining. Upstate was not able to shrink the Lipscomb’s lead under 20 the rest of the way.
“We’re starting to show some signs of maturity and that is very, very important to us,” Sanderson said. “And being able to maintain a big lead, I was proud of the way we played.”
Michael Teller had a stellar evening for the Bisons. He led Lipscomb with a career-high 20 points and was eight-of-eight from the floor and four-of-four from the 3-point line. He had a career-high seven steals.
“[Teller] shot it terrifically,” Sanderson said. “He was good defensively. He was actively defensively and got seven steals and had one of his better games.”
Teller began the year averaging 10.8 points per game in Lipscomb’s first 12 games, but his average had dropped off to 6.6 points over the last 11 games.
“I texted him last week and told him we need to start stepping up and playing on both ends of the floor,” Sanderson said. “He was letting his inability to make shots affect his energy defending and rebounding. He has to defend and rebound even when he’s not making shots and sometimes that is hard to do.”
Hodzic continued his dominance in the post with 18 points and 12 rebounds. It was his third double-double in a row.
“The last three games he has started rebounding the ball out of his area,” Sanderson said. “He’s going to get balls in traffic and out of his area and chasing balls down. He’s played well these last few games.”
Josh Slater tied a career high with seven assists and he turned the ball over just one time. Michael Lusk had three assists and no turnovers. Lusk is averaging 4.7 assists and one turnover in the three games this week.
“Josh played solid today,” Sanderson said. “But I think the biggest reason we have played better is the play of Mike Lusk. He’s been solid for us on both ends of the floor.”
The Bisons are back in action Monday evening in Allen Arena against ETSU. It will be the fourth game in eight days four Lipscomb. Game time is 7 p.m.
“I didn’t play Adnan and a lot of our guys the last eight or nine minutes of the game trying to get as much rest as possible for Monday’s game,” Sanderson said. “That was critical for us.”
Lipscomb held a 34-29 advantage on the boards.
Bobby Davis led Upstate with 15 points and nine rebounds.
Lipscomb improves to 11-13, 7-8 in the A-Sun. USC Upstate drops to 7-17, 7-8 A-Sun.
Jonathan Seamon and Benjamin Seamon will be on the call for the Lipscomb Sports Network. Free online audio streaming is available at www.LipscombSports.com/sportsnetwork/.
Article by Trevor Garrett of the Lipscomb Athletic Office of Media Relations