|February 22, 2018||1st||2nd||Final|
|Stats at a Glance||KSU||LIP|
|FG Percentage||.569 (29-51)||.547 (29-53)|
|3P FG Percentage||.500 (5-10)||.292 (7-24)|
|FT Percentage||.786 (11-14)||.720 (18-25)|
BUCKLAND - 2
MATHEWS - 2
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – For the second consecutive season, the Lipscomb men’s basketball team has eclipsed the 20-win mark. This time around, the Bisons didn’t need any ASUN tournament games to get there.
Lipscomb wrapped its 2017-18 regular season with an 83-74 victory over Kennesaw State on Senior Night at Allen Arena. The win moved the Bisons overall record to 20-9 and 10-4 in ASUN play. It is the first time the Purple and Gold have eclipsed 20 wins in back-to-back seasons since joining the conference.
“I like where we are right now and I like the mentality of our team,” Lipscomb head coach Casey Alexander said. “I also like the total product we are putting out there.
“We had a lot of different answers tonight with a lot of different guys. Every time we needed a response, someone stepped up. We are playing well at the right time of the season.”
The Bisons honored its three seniors – George Brammeier, Asa Duvall and Aaron Korn – prior to tip-off, but it was redshirt junior Rob Marberry that stole the show.
The 6-foot-7 forward poured in 18 points in the first half, and he added 16 more in the final 20 minutes to finish with a game-high 32 points. It marks the third game Marberry has scored 30 or more points in his last seven.
“We are rolling right now,” Marberry said. “I feel like we are playing well on both offense and defense. We are sticking to what we know and what’s worked for us all season long.”
Marberry also added 11 rebound to his line for his third double-double of the season and the fifth of his career.
Junior Garrison Mathews was a non-factor in the first half, but he did bank an off-balance three-pointer to beat the halftime buzzer. The Franklin native finished in double figures with 14 points.
“We have a really good culture in our locker room,” Alexander said. “Our guys love each other and want to play for one another. It hasn’t been easy or fun all the time, but we’ve stayed the course. They guys believe in what we are doing, so it’s nice to see them get rewarded here tonight.”
Nick Masterson kept the Owls within striking distance with his hot shooting, but his 30 points ultimately wouldn’t be enough. Owl teammate Issac Mbuyamba also chipped in 21 points.
- Lipscomb finished the regular season with an 11-2 record at Allen Arena. Their two losses were to FGCU and NJIT – both games in which the Bisons had double-digits leads in the second half.
- The Bisons swept the season series against the Owls and improved to 19-7 all-time against their ASUN foe.
- Mathews (1,635 points) continues to climb Lipscomb’s NCAA-era career scoring list. On Thursday, he passed Eddie Ard (1,624) and Brian Fisk (1,633) to move into second place behind Adnan Hodzic (2,002).
- Lipscomb doubled up KSU in the paint, 44-22.
- Marberry hit his first 10 shots of the night before finally missing. He is shooting 61.1 percent from the floor this season, the second highest mark in the ASUN.
- Kenny Cooper set a season high with nine assists in the win. The sophomore also scored nine points.
- Eli Pepper nearly had a double-double with nine points and eight rebounds.
- KSU outshot Lipscomb from the floor, 57-percent to 55-percent. The Bisons improved to 16-3 when shooting over 43 percent.
Lipscomb begins its quest for the ASUN title when Stetson comes to town on Monday for the conference quarterfinals. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. in Allen Arena. To purchase your tickets, visit HERE.
“Things have gone our way all year and we’ve just found ways to win,” Alexander said. “We’ve worked all year long to get to this moment (ASUN Tournament). This week will not determine a success or failure, but it’s what we’ve poured our all into. Now is the time to give it everything we have and see what the results are.”