Covenant Men Hold Off Averett 77-73
Saturday, January 16, 2021
The Covenant men's basketball team saw a 13-point second half lead disappear, but used clutch 3-pointers from Zack Allen and free throws down the stretch to hold off Averett, 77-73, in non-conference action inside Boshamer Gymnasium on Saturday.
The win snaps a two-game losing streak for Covenant (4-3), while it was the season-opener for Averett (0-1). Covenant is 3-0 against Division III foes this season.
After holding a 13-point lead with 14:35 left in the second half, Covenant saw the margin trimmed and eventually erased late in the period.
Allen hit a game-tying 3-pointer with 2:12 left before following with another triple just moments later to give Covenant a 74-73 lead with 53 seconds left.
The Covenant defense stood tall on Averett's next two possessions, forcing a missed layup and a turnover, while Chris Barnette hit 3-of-4 free throws in the final 10 seconds to seal the win.
Will Crumly led all players with 25 points on 8-of-9 shooting with six rebounds and four assists. Crumly scored 16 of his points in the second half. Promise Igbanu registered his first career double-double with 11 points and a career-high 10 rebounds. Barnette added 13 points and five rebounds and Allen finished with 11 points.
Covenant scorched the nets in the first half by shooting 72.7 percent (16-of-22) from the field. The Scots trailed 17-15, but used an 11-0 run to take a 26-17 lead after a Daevon Platt 3-pointer with 8:54 left in the period. The lead increased to 11 (31-20) after a Jackson Fitzgerald bucket with 4:58 remaining in the first and the Scots took a 38-31 lead into the break.
Although Covenant cooled off from the field in the second half, the Scots still stretched the margin to double-digits early in the period. A Crumly 3-pointer gave the Scots a 50-37 edge with 14:35 left before Averett rallied back.
Averett went on a 15-3 run to climb within 53-52 with 9:06 left and would take the lead twice later in the half before the Scots had the final answer.
Isaiah Jones had 17 points to lead Averett. Montre' Cash had 14 points and 10 assists, while Jordan Lewis had 16 points. Averett shot 39.1 percent (25-of-64) for the game with 11 3-pointers.
Covenant connected on 57.1 percent (24-of-42) from the field with nine 3-pointers and a 20-of-27 effort at the foul line. The Scots had a 34-38 rebound advantage and outscored Averett 28-16 in the paint.
Covenant opens the home season on Friday, Jan. 22 against USA South foe Berea. Tip-off is set for 6 p.m.