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January 09, 20161st2ndFinal
Kennesaw State3963102
Stats at a GlanceLIPKSU
FG Percentage.364 (28-77) .571 (36-63)
3P FG Percentage.229 (8-35) .667 (10-15)
FT Percentage.710 (22-31) .690 (20-29)
Offensive Rebounds2414
Defensive Rebounds1527
Total Rebounds3941
Bench Points1333
PointsPepper - 22
ReboundsPepper - 17
AssistsMoran - 4
StealsHampton - 4
RAY - 2
BlocksPepper - 1
Wishon - 1
Brammeier - 1
Sluggish start costly for men's basketball in A-Sun opener at Kennesaw State
Saturday, January 9, 2016
Sluggish start costly for men's basketball in A-Sun opener at Kennesaw State

KENNESAW, Ga. – An inferno like start for homestanding Kennesaw State, proved too much for the Lipscomb men’s basketball team in a 102-86 Atlantic Sun Conference road loss at the KSU Convocation Center on Saturday afternoon.

The Owls (5-12) came out blazing and hit 12 of their first 15 shots from the field to jump out to a 26-9 advantage.  The fast start was compounded by shooting woes for the Bisons (4-13), who started the game just 2-of-12.  Lipscomb also committed nine turnovers in the first 11:30 of play that led to the Owls leading by as many as 18 in the first half.

“It’s really inexcusable to not be ready to play and to get off to such a poor start,” said Lipscomb head coach Casey Alexander. “We were down 18 with eight minutes to go and that’s a clear indication of how much the game mattered.

“I love the guys in our locker room and I believe in them but our staff has to initiate some change. Then we’ve got to see that change in how we play starting Monday in practice and from this point on.”

Despite the rough start, the Bisons battled back in the second half and got as close as eight in the second stanza when freshman forward Eli Pepper hit a trey with 5:19 to play.  The newcomer would go on to score a career-high 22 points and grab a career-high 17 rebounds for his first career double-double.

“If there is a bright spot today it’s Eli Pepper for sure,” said Alexander. “He played with a lot of heart and kept fighting.”

The Bisons placed four players in double figures as J.C. Hampton scored 18 along with Nathan Moran and George Brammeirer, who scored 16 and 11, respectively. 

Kennesaw State was led by Nick Masterson, who finished with a career and game high 24 points.

Herd notes:

  • 20 of Pepper’s 22 points came in the second half.
  • The win for Kennesaw snapped a 10-game winning streak for the Bisons in the series between the two conference foes.
  • The Bisons hit just 23 percent (4-17) from beyond the arc in the first half.
  • Pepper’s 17 rebounds were the most by a Bison since Stephen Hurt grabbed 18 against Austin Peay in 2012. The Owls finished the game with a 41-39 edge on the boards however. The Bisons managed a 24-14 edge in offensive rebounds marking a season best.
  • After turning the ball over 10 times in the first half, the Bisons issued just four miscues in the final 20 minutes of action to win the turnover battle 16-14.
  • KSU held a 57-35 percent advantage in shooting including a 67-23 percent advantage from downtown. The Bisons hit just 8-of-35 while the Owls sank 10-of-15.



Up next:  The Bisons continue this four-game A-Sun road swing with a trip to Jacksonville, Florida to take on defending A-Sun champion North Florida on Thursday followed by a Saturday contest at Jacksonville University.  Both contests will air live on ESPN3.