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Jacksonville (6-9, 2-2 A-Sun)
Lipscomb (5-10, 0-4 A-Sun)
1/6/2014 | Nashville, Tenn. - Allen Arena | Attendance: 562
Monday, January 06, 2014
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Despite a season-best 28-point effort from freshman guard Josh Williams and hitting 13 shots from beyond the arc, the Lipscomb men’s basketball squad fell 88-85 to Atlantic Sun Conference foe Jacksonville on Monday night at Allen Arena.
Shooting 10-of-16 from the floor and 4-of-8 from deep, Williams made the most of his first career start after illness sidelined senior guard Khion Sankey. The Jackson, Miss. native also hauled a team best nine rebounds in 37 minutes of action for the Bisons (5-10, 0-4 A-Sun).
“It was a remarkable night for Josh,” said Lipscomb head coach Casey Alexander. “He was really efficient offensively across the board. For a freshman to play with that much confidence, to play that inspired and to give us that kind of lift was really important tonight. Obviously we had to have it and I give him a lot of credit.”
The game was tight throughout the contest as it featured 15 lead changes and 16 ties and the Bisons had a chance to tie the game as time expired. Junior forward Martin Smith got a good look at a 3-pointer with in the final seconds but the attempt clanged off the back of the rim and into the hands of redshirt-freshman guard J.C. Hampton. The Gainesville, Ga. native attempted to get a shot off at the buzzer but Jacksonville’s Jarvis Haywood swatted the attempt away to seal the win.
“Sometimes you feel like you’re playing hard and you really want to win that it’s going to happen for you but you have to make the plays it takes to win the game,” said Alexander. “We’re trying and I love the effort and think the results will come we just have to stay with it.”
Hampton added 19 points for the Purple and Gold hitting three of the Bisons 13 treys. Sophomore guard J.C. Butler also scored in double digits for Lipscomb with a career-best, 13-point effort against the Dolphins (6-9, 2-2 A-Sun).
“It’s been a while since J.J. really made a contribution like we want to see out of him,” said Alexander. “He can do a lot of good things. He plays with a lot of energy and a lot of effort and he’s been a little down lately trying to find what his niche is.
“For him to come out and play with confidence was important for us and he helped us stay in the game.”
Jacksonville guard Jarvis Haywood led the Dolphins with 23 points on 9-of-14 shooting. RJ Slawson and Keith McDougald added 16 and 14, respectively for JU.
The Dolphins were able to overcome the 13 3-pointers from the Bisons by sinking 28 free throws in 35 attempts from the charity stripe. The Bisons also hit 80 percent from the line but shot 15 fewer free throws. JU held a slim 36-34 advantage in rebounding but Lipscomb was able to turn 13 offensive rebounds into 17 second-chance points.
The Bisons hit the road again on Thursday for a 6 p.m. Atlantic Sun Conference matchup at ETSU in Johnson City. Pregame coverage begins on 92.9 Game 2 at 5:45 with the Lyons Chevrolet/GMC Drive to the Game.