Mount Olive, NC – Five players scored in double figures and the defense held Mount Olive to just 36.3 percent shooting from the floor as the North Greenville University men’s basketball team earned its first Conference Carolinas victory of the season with an 85-80 win over the Trojans on Monday night.
"Our young men showed tremendous toughness on the road tonight," said head coach Chad Lister. "Mount Olive is well-coached and traditionally a Top 25 program. We are thrilled to win this one."
The Crusaders ended their three-game road trip shooting 48.3 percent in the game, led by Tyshawn Patterson and Chris Dean with 23 points apiece. Dean recorded his first double-double of the season with a game-high 12 rebounds.
After a closely contested first half of play, North Greenville ended the opening period on a 16-11 run over the final five minutes to gain a 43-38 edge at the break.
North Greenville held a slight lead for much of the second half, gaining their largest lead of 10 points with 3:16 remaining. Mount Olive tried to close the door but crucial free throws from Patterson and Tim Franklin late in the game sealed the win for the Crusaders.
Keith Johnson totaled 11 points in the game as did Jimmy Ellis, while Franklin rounded out the double-digit scorers, finishing with 10 points and game-high seven assists.
With their early season road trip out of the way, the Crusaders (3-1, 1-1 in Conference Carolinas) will return home on Tuesday, Nov. 27 to host Belmont Abbey College at 7:30 p.m. in Hayes Gymnasium.