BELMONT, N.C. -- Junior LJ McCoy tallied a career-high 21 points and two other players reached double-figures, but Belmont Abbey came up short in a key regional matchup with Lenoir-Rhyne Wednesday afternoon at the Wheeler Center. The setback snapped a four-game winning streak for the Crusaders and sent them into the Christmas break with a 9-3 record.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- McCoy hit seven of 12 from the field, including five of eight three-point attempts. He also grabbed three rebounds and had a steal.
- Sean Halloran and DeQuan Abrom each tallied 13 points.
- Belmont Abbey struggled from the field, hitting just 41.8 percent overall, snapping a run of five straight games making at least half its shots. The Crusaders also made just nine of 24 threes.
- Conversely, the Bears (9-3) shot 47.1 percent from the field overall and hit 15 of 31 (48.4 percent) from behind the arc.
- The eight turnovers for BAC were a new season low.
- Mason Hawks led four players from Lenoir-Rhyne in double figures. He tallied 20 points behind six three-pointers. Bertrand Awana posted a double-double of 11 points and 15 rebounds, while adding two blocked shots.
- Lenoir-Rhyne led 40-34 at halftime, then stretched that to 14, 48-34, with 16:58 remaining.
- Belmont Abbey immediately followed with an 11-0 run over the next 4:20 to close to within three.
- Despite trailing by 11, 77-66, with 1:06 to play, the Crusaders never quit, using an 8-0 run to cut the margin to three, 78-75 with nine seconds left.
- Belmont Abbey now takes week-long holiday break mandated for Division II starting tonight. The Crusaders return to action next Saturday, Dec. 29 at Tusculum.