HARROGATE, TN -- The 16th-ranked Railsplitters flaunted their offensive firepower in a 107-75 shellacking of the Lions of Mars Hill College in South Atlantic Conference men's basketball action in Harrogate, Tennessee. Lincoln Memorial University (16-3, 9-2 SAC) rebounded from Saturday's loss to Catawba by recording their highest point total of the season, while Mars Hill sunk to 3-16 overall and 0-11 in league play with the loss.
Lincoln Memorial was dazzling on the offensive end of the floor in tonight's contest, as they finished 45-73 from the floor for a 61.6% mark. Five different players crossed the double-digit plateau and 10 of the 11 players who saw action for LMU recorded a field goal. Senior marksman Cam Carden led all players with 22 points, all but one of which were accrued from his seven-for-nine effort from deep. Carden went a perfect six-for-six from long range in the first half and fell just two three-pointers shy of matching the all-time single-game mark at LMU of nine treys. Senior Jake Troyli was also spectacular in the game, tallying 17 points on eight-of-12 shooting. The Largo, Florida native paced LMU to a 33-27 advantage on the boards with seven rebounds in only 21 minutes.
Along with Carden, Chance Jones and Keenan Peterson headlined a bench effort for the Railsplitters which more than doubled the production of the Lions. Lincoln Memorial's bench supplied a 65-31 advantage in that category. Chance Jones poured in 14 points on six-of-seven shooting, while dishing out four assists in only 20 minutes. Peterson tallied 13 minutes on the floor but made his impact felt with 11 points and three rebounds. Tristan Hicks also sparked the 'Splitters with eight points, and the trio of Vincent Bailey, Lorenza Ross and Dustin Craig netted six points apiece.
Despite the 32-point loss, the Lions showed efficiency on the offensive end, as they capped the contest with a 47.3% mark from the field. Khouraichi Thiam played all 40 minutes for Mars Hill and finished with an 18-point, 11-rebound performance to lead the Lion attack. Thiam went eight-for-12 from the floor en route to rounding out his stat ledger. Jalen Witherspoon matched Thiam's production with 18 points in 35 minutes off the bench for Mars Hill. The Railsplitters did, however, force the Lions into committing 22 turnovers which led to 33 points.
The Railsplitters' offensive potency was aided by a 19-23 effort from the charity stripe, good for 82.6%.
The Lions drew first blood with a jumper by Kevin Haynes to open play, however, Lincoln Memorial answered with a 12-0 run, capped with a jumper by Lorenza Ross at the 15:15 mark to assume command of the game. Over the next six minutes, Mars Hill held sway, driving to within nine on a layup by Jalen Witherspoon with 9:38 left in the period. The Railsplitters effectively took control of the contest over the next two minutes and 17 seconds, as they used a 15-2 run on the wings of three-consecutive three-pointers from Cam Carden to run out to a 40-18 advantage. The Railsplitters continued to push the pace, driving out to a 30-point advantage at 58-28 at the conclusion of the first period.
The second stanza went in complete favor of the Railsplitters, as they never led by less than 26 and amassed as large as a 36-point advantage en route to a 107-75 victory over the Lions.
The Railsplitters, who rank 10th in all of the NCAA Division II in three-point field-goal percentage, outdid themselves with a 72.2% mark (13-18) in tonight's contest, more than 30 percentage points higher than their season average.
Lincoln Memorial will look to ride this hot shooting into Saturday night, as they are poised to host Newberry College in a South Atlantic Conference showdown with the Wolves. That game is slated to tip at 8 pm in Harrogate, Tennessee.