LAURINBURG — Both St. Andrews University basketball teams lost close games Saturday, and it was the first loss of the season for the women’s team.
The SAU men’s team lost a last-second heartbreaker to Bryan College Saturday as a three-pointer by Bryan with 2.4 seconds left was able to win the game 58-55 for the Lions.
After two free throws by Bryan forward Brandon Cole with 30 seconds left put Bryan up 55-52, SAU point guard Aaron Smith took the ball and continued his hot shooting as he drilled a three-pointer to tie the ballgame with 20 seconds to play. However, Smith’s 34 points in the game were not enough as Bryan’s Robert Troino would win the game at the buzzer with a three-pointer from the corner and break the hearts of the SAU faithful.
Smith led the Knights with 34 points on 13 of 26 shooting and two steals and was also 6-of-12 on three-pointers himself. Unfortunately, he did not have much help otherwise from his teammates as they could only combine for 21 points. Smith’s big game is the most points scored by an SAU player since current assistant coach Chris Sumski scored 30 a few years ago.
Sophomore guard Chris Tucker led with seven rebounds while freshman forward Nathaniel Pittman had five points, five rebounds, one block and two steals. Junior guard Jibri Banner led with four assists and also had six rebounds and a steal.
As a whole, St. Andrews shot 44 percent for the game while Bryan shot 42.5 percent. However, Bryan was just a tad better on threes as they were 7-of-15 for 46.7 percent while the Knights where 7-of-18 for 39 percent. It was an overall clean game as well as both teams only combined for 22 turnovers.
Bryan (2-4, 2-0) was led by Cole’s 17 points and nine rebounds and point guard Logan Sharp’s 10 points and 4 assists.
St. Andrews (1-3, 0-2) will continue their three-game home stand when they host conference foe Milligan College (3-1) Thursday at 7:30 p.m.
Women’s team beaten for first time this season
The SAU women’s basketball team suffered their first loss of the season on Saturday as they fell 70-63 to the Lady Lions of Bryan College inside Harris Court.
Bryan’s impressive three-point shooting was the difference as they combined to go 7-of-13 from three whereas SAU only attempted one three the entire game.
Junior guard Karin Law and senior forward Natia Gasque each scored 17 points apiece for the Lady Knights, but it was not enough as no other player was in double-figure scoring on the day. Gasque also blocked four shots on the day as she continues to lead the conference in blocks with 14. Law’s 17 are a new career-high for her as well. Law had a good all-around game as she also recorded six rebounds and two assists with a steal.
Sophomore forward Alexus Davis also led with 10 rebounds and scored six points while senior forward Kimayah Fulcher had eight points, three rebounds and a steal.
The Lady Knights outrebounded Bryan College 38-31, but the Lady Lions had four players in double-figure scoring to put them over the top. They were led by Keila Formont’s 19 points and Megan Billingsby’s 14 points and 10 rebounds. Also playing well for Bryan was guard Kelsey Brooks and her 11 points and eight steals.
Bryan improves to 3-3 on the year and 2-0 in the conference while SAU falls to 3-1 and 1-1 in the league. The Knights will be back at home when they host No. 19 Milligan College (1-2, 0-1) Thursday at 5:30 p.m.