GREENEVILLE, Tenn. -- DeQuan Abrom scored 18 points and Sean Halloran added 12 points, seven rebounds and four assists, leading Belmont Abbey to a 65-63 victory over Tusculum Saturday afternoon. With the win, the Crusaders improve to 10-3 overall, again equalling their best start since 2002-03, while the Pioneers fall to 4-7.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- Belmont Abbey outshot Tusculum 43.8 percent to 37.7 percent from the field, while both teams made a third of their three-point attempts
- The difference in the game came at the free-throw line, where the Crusaders, ranked second nationally, hit 15 of 17 (88.2%) compared to the Pioneers' 58.8% (10 of 17)
- Belmont Abbey gave up the game's first four points, but then scored the next eight.
- With the score tied at 10, LJ McCoy hit a three-pointer that started a 16-4 run. It ended with 11 straight points, the 11th double-digit spurt of the season.
- The largest lead of the half was 12 when Romeao Ferguson's conventional three-point play gave the Crusaders a 26-14 advantage with 6:25 to play.
- Belmont Abbey led 32-23 at the half, tying a season-best for fewest point allowed in any either period (vs. Mars Hill, Nov. 10)
- Tusculum used an 8-0 run to cut the gap to three, 37-34, with 15:49 to play, but The Abbey responded with 13 of the next 17 points to push the lead back to 12, 50-38. John Bowen and Brayden Gault hit threes to start the surge.
- Belmont Abbey led by 11, 63-52 with just over four minutes left, before the Pioneers made a final charge. They outscored the Crusaders 8-0, then answered an Abrom dunk with a three-pointer to cut the difference to two, 65.63.
- The Pioneers had a chance to tie with 1.4 seconds left when they were shooting two free throws, but the first missed and a violation was called on the second. However, after a steal on the inbounds a three-pointer to win from just inside halfcourt was wide.
- Belmont Abbey returns to action on Thursday when it hosts Erskine in Conference Carolinas play.