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Bulldogs survive Bluefield in overtime
Dec 02, 2012 12:00 am
Williams makes key plays in extra session
Cumberland blew an 18-point lead against Bluefield College with ten minutes remaining in the game to force overtime and pull out a 94-92 win Thursday night at the Dallas Floyd Recreation Center.
Terry Williams was clutch in the extra period, hitting both of his free throws and a layup for his only, but very timely, points on the night.
Three of Charles Stewart’s eight points also came in the final stanza, one a driving layup with just over two minutes to go and the backend of two free throws to give CU its two point lead with 1.2 seconds remaining.
After Stewart’s point, Bluefield called a timeout and returned with the ball on Cumberland’s baseline, trailing 94-92. With Williams’ outstretched arms defending the inbounder, BC’s pass was smacked back out-of-bounds, leaving only .4 seconds on the clock and the game in CU’s hands after the Rams could not convert a final play, giving the Bulldogs their first Mid-South Conference win.
Brian Blackmon and Elijah Gillis each had career-highs, with Blackmon scoring 25 points on 10-of-14 shooting, and Gillis posting 17 points and seven rebounds. Jerret Towns provided an all-around game for the Bulldogs, compiling ten points, eight rebounds and a career-high eight assists.
Blackmon started things off for CU, scoring a layup four seconds into the game on a won tip by Cumberland. Three buckets by Gillis within the two-and-a-half minutes pushed the Bulldogs out to a 10-2 lead. Bluefield’s Byron Carpenter, who dominated inside the entire night and went 12-of 13 from the line, was the only offense for Bluefield in an eight minute stretch in the first half. The Rams found themselves in a double-digit hole during the final six minutes of the first half, trailing by as much as 17.
CU was able to stay in control for the first seven minutes of the second period by allowing Carpenter continue to make his presence felt down low, but pressuring Bluefield’s guards. Things changed with ten minutes left to play with CU holding a 16 point lead, when BC’s backcourt came to life. Ed Porter hit a three-pointer, and Kearsten Marion made two layups to lessen the lead to ten.
Cumberland answered with layups by Blackmon and Gillis to push the lead to 79-66 with under six minutes to play, but Marion knocked one down from deep, followed by a free throw and a jumper by Porter to bring the lead into single digits. With an 86-81 advantage and just over a minute to play, the Bulldogs began to fall apart while the Rams were amping up. After two free throws by Porter, Carpenter converted a three-point play to dwindle CU’s lead to one with 53 seconds to go. CU was unable to get a good look at the basket, and a steal by Bluefield led to a layup and the Rams’ first lead of the game. On the ensuing play, Blackmon was fouled and sent to line with four seconds on the clock, missing the first free throw but connecting on the second to send it into overtime.
Despite Carpenter’s 34 points, the Bulldogs outscored the Rams 46-24 in the paint. The bench was huge for CU, providing 30 points compared to BC’s 12.
The Bulldogs will take a break from conference play on Saturday, traveling to Oakwood for a 9 p.m. game.