|December 01, 2018||1st||2nd||Final|
|Stats at a Glance||LIP||MT|
|FG Percentage||.474 (27-57)||.439 (25-57)|
|3P FG Percentage||.308 (8-26)||.409 (9-22)|
|FT Percentage||.759 (22-29)||.833 (15-18)|
FLEMING - 2
COOPER - 2
WOLFE - 2
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – Behind a season high 29 points from Garrison Mathews, the Lipscomb men’s basketball team went on the road Saturday and knocked off in-state rival Middle Tennessee 84-74 at the Murphy Center in Murfreesboro.
“I’ve got a lot of respect for Middle Tennessee,” Lipscomb head coach Casey Alexander said. “We had to fight really hard, we had to make a lot of plays, and we just happened to be on the right end of experience.”
It was the fourth consecutive win, all on the road, for the Bisons. They are now 6-1 on the year giving the program its best start since 2004-05.
Mathews pounded the Blue Raiders (3-5) from all levels and was hot early on, scoring 13 of Lipscomb’s first 24 points. He moved into 10th on the school’s all-time scoring list with 1,868 career points, passing John Kimbrell (1982-86), who had 1,847.
"Here's why he’s so good," Alexander said. "He got 29 points and of his eight (field goals), he got eight (points) from inside the (3-point) arc, he got 12 (points) from outside the arc, he got nine (points) from the free throw line. There just aren't many guys that can score on all three levels at that clip."
After leading by as many as six on two occasions at 20-14 and 26-20 the first half, the Bisons went into the locker room down, 38-37.
Antonio Green spearheaded the comeback for the Blue Raiders with 21 of his game-high 30 points in the opening 20 minutes. The Tupelo, Mississippi native knocked down four triples and converted an and-one to give Middle Tennessee the slight edge at the half while outshooting the Bisons from the floor 54% to 35%.
One of the most experienced teams in the country, Lipscomb never wavered. The Bisons sprinted out to a quick 6-0 run over the first 32 seconds in the second half to recapture the lead and never looked back.
Middle Tennessee eventually pulled back even at 46-46, but Matt Rose swished one of his two long balls to give Lipscomb its final lead with 15:52 to play.
Over the next seven minutes, the boys from Nashville wore down the Blue Raiders with a 22-10 run that included six players scoring for the Bisons. Redshirt freshman Ahsan Asadullah dropped in six of his 10 points during the run. His bucket with 8:10 remaining gave Lipscomb its largest lead of the night at 70-57.
A fitting end to the game, Matthews scored the final points for the Bisons at the line with 21 seconds to play. Matthews hit 9-of-10 at the line to help Lipscomb to a 7-point advantage at the charity stripe. The Bisons hit 22-of-29, while the Blue Raiders knocked down 15-of-18.
"It's not necessarily what I did tonight; I've got to have great screens from guys, great passes from guys," Mathews said. "When you have all the offensive talent that we have, they can't just focus on me. We've got great scorers."
Three other Bisons finished in double figures. Rob Marberry scored 12 points, while Kenny Cooper and Asadullah each added 10.
- Lipscomb has now won 14 of its last 16 games, and nine straight true road games.
- The Bisons won the turnover battle 17-9 and scored 21 points off those miscues.
- Marberry scored his 1,000th point as a Bison on his first bucket of the night. He entered the night with 1,023 career points, but only 999 at Lipscomb.
- Eli Pepper led the team with 11 boards to go with six points. He also swiped a career high four steals. The Bisons totaled seven as a steam.
- Mathews moved into 15th all-time on the ASUN Conference career scoring list. He passed Stetson’s Divine Myles (2017-18). He picked up his 43rd-career game of at least 20 points.
- Lipscomb outshot Middle Tennessee 47% (27-of-57) to 44% (25-of-57).
- The Purple and Gold hit 8-of-22 from long distance.
The Bisons wrap up their five-game road trip on Tuesday with the short trip up Belmont Boulevard to take on the Bruins in the second edition of the Battle of the Boulevard this season. The Bisons and Bruins will tip it up at 7 p.m. at the Curb Event Center on ESPN+.