BELMONT, N.C. -- Four Crusaders tallied 13 points apiece, but it a late rally fell short as Emmanuel held off Belmont Abbey 70-68 in Conference Carolinas men's basketball action Tuesday afternoon. Troy Henderson's jumper at the buzzer would have tied the game, but caromed off the rim.
Jacob Wilson added seven rebounds and four assists to his 13 points, while Deion Lane chipped in five rebounds with his 13. Aidan Richard and Gunnar Hardarson also shared team-high scoring honors. Ronnie Stanley of Emmanuel led all scorers with 18 points.
Belmont Abbey (5-7, 1-3) trailed by six, 56-50, with just under 10 minutes remaining, when it went on a 9-0 run to hold a three-point lead, 59-56 with 6:12 left. However, Emmanuel (9-4, 4-1) quickly answered, turning a 63-60 deficit into a 68-63 lead at the 53-second mark with eight straight points. A Ben Ferguson three with 15 ticks led cut the deficit to two, then a missed free throw set up the final attempt.
Emmanuel held a slim 37-34 advantage at the half, despite outshooting (48.3% to 44.0%) and outrebounding (18-13) the Crusaders. But the numbers improved in the second stanza as The Abbey hit 53.8 percent from the field and closed the rebounding game to 31-30.
Belmont Abbey returns to action this weekend with a Friday-Saturday road swing at King and Lees-McRae.