Tigerville, SC – Despite a historic night in Hayes Gymnasium, the North Greenville University men’s basketball team dropped a tight contest with Conference Carolinas foe Lees-McRae 63-61 on Wednesday night.
"I give Lees-McRae credit, they out-worked us tonight," said head coach Chad Lister. "This is a disappointing loss on our home floor."
Senior Paul Harrison became the school’s all-time leading scorer for men’s basketball with his fourth point of the game just two minutes into the contest.
The Crusaders opened the game on a 9-3 run before the Bobcats heated up from the field and went into the break with a slim 30-27 advantage.
North Greenville battled back in the second half and had multiple chances to win the game late but Lees-McRae’s clutch free throw shooting allowed them to secure the win.
The Bobcats shot 14-of-22 from the line in the game, including 12-of-18 in the second half. Lees-McRae shot just 40.7% from the field compared 46.9% by the Crusaders. However, the edge for the Bobcats came from beyond the arc as they shot 31.3% from three-point range but the Crusaders managed just 18.2% from long range.
The Crusaders were led by sophomore guard Chris Dean who shot 8-of-10 from the floor en route to a game-high 22 points with eight rebounds. Harrison recorded his eighth double-double with 16 points and 15 rebounds with four blocks.
"We have a short time to regroup," said Lister. "I am confident we will learn from this."
North Greenville (8-6, 3-4 in conference) will look to even its conference record as they play host to Pfeiffer University on Saturday, Jan. 21 at 4 p.m.