|February 25, 2009||1st||2nd||Final|
|Stats at a Glance||BCM||NEWM|
|FG Percentage||.481 (25-52)||.460 (23-50)|
|3P FG Percentage||.429 (6-14)||.400 (8-20)|
|FT Percentage||.667 (6-9)||.731 (19-26)|
Domsic - 4
Goodwell - 4
Martin - 4
Chilton - 1
NEWBERRY, S.C. - The Newberry College men's basketball team led by as many as 24 points in the second half on the way to a 73-62 win over visiting Brevard College in Eleazer Arena on Wednesday night.
Newberry (19-7, 9-6 South Atlantic Conference) celebrated the careers of seniors Matt Alexander (Norcross, Ga.), Clemente Martin (Freeport, Bahamas), Ty Overmyer (Dawsonville, Ga.) and Vytautas Valiulis (Vilnius, Lithuania) prior to the game. The seniors played in their final regular season home game and were led by Martin's 24-point performance.
Martin was joined in double digits by 13 points from Jesse Wheeler (Suwanee, Ga.) and 12 points from Brett Goodwell (Inglewood, Calif.). Newberry - which leads the nation in blocked shots per game - swatted an impressive 11 shots in the game, including six from Kendrick Johnson (Orangeburg, S.C.). Nine of the team's blocks came in the first half and Johnson is now one blocked shot away from tying for 25th all-time in the history of NCAA Division II.
Brevard (12-14, 3-12 SAC) was led by a double-double from the conference's leading rebounder, as Jonathan Whitson (Clyde, N.C.) posted 20 points and 12 rebounds. Joseph Chilton (Brasstown, N.C.) scored 11 points for the Tornados.
The Tornados scored the opening five points of the game, but their lead was permanently erased following a pair of Martin three-pointers. Newberry shot almost exclusively from beyond the arc early, as the team's opening seven buckets were trifectas. The scarlet and gray did not knock down a two-pointer until Grant Domsic (Winter Garden, Fla.) - normally a long distance threat - canned a jumper with 5:52 left in the half to give Newberry a double digit lead at 23-13.
Brevard would cut that lead down to sevn points with 1:49 left in the half on a Chilton three-pointer, but Newberry closed out the half on a 7-0 run and Martin's three-point play with 22 seconds remaining gave Newberry a 34-20 halftime lead. Johnson had three emphatic blocks in the final three minutes of the half.
Newberry held the 14-point advantage at the break and extended that lead out to 24 points in the first seven minutes of the second half. Brevard held the scarlet and gray near in the opening stages of the period, but NC took its first 20-point lead of the game when a Goodwell layup with 14:49 on the clock capped an 8-0 Newberry surge. A Domsic triple with 13:20 to play gave Newberry its largest lead of the contest at 53-29.
But the Tornados would not go away without a fight, taking off on a 17-4 run over the next five minutes. Brevard nailed three shots from downtown to cut the lead to 11 points with 8:13 to play. A pair of Whitson free throws with 3:12 to play narrowed the lead to eight points at 64-56, but an emphatic Wheeler dunk and 7-of-8 free throw shooting down the stretch sealed the Newberry victory.
Both teams shot the ball well in the second half, as Newberry was 12-of-24 (50.0%) from the field and the Tornados were 16-of-29 (55.2%) from the floor in the final 20 minutes of play. Newberry forced 23 Brevard turnovers in the game, 11 of which were steals.
Newberry wraps up the regular season on Saturday night in Harrogate, Tenn., against the Railsplitters of Lincoln Memorial University. A Newberry win would clinch a top four seed in the 2009 Food Lion South Atlantic Conference Tournament, as Lenoir-Rhyne's win and Tusculum's loss tonight ensured the Bears the top seed. Tipoff in Tex Turner Arena is set for 8 p.m.