Belmont, N.C. - North Greenville fell to 4-10 in Conference Carolinas play on Tuesday night after suffering a 10-point, 91-81 loss to Belmont Abbey.
North Greenville cut a 10-piont deficit to just two as the clocked ticked toward the five minute mark. Belmont led the Crusaders 34-32 with 7:23 left in the half before going on an 8-1 run to extend the lead to nine points. Abbey would go up by 11-points with 1:48 left but consecutive stop and scores by North Greenville would cut the edge to seven. Abbey would score one more basket before the clock ran out to take a nine point, 50-41 lead into intermission.
The Crusaders 51.6 percent in the first half and was 5 of 12 from three-point range. Abbey was even hotter from the field, knocking down 20 of 35 shots in the first period and 8 of 15 three-pointers. Korval McElroy and Miguel Reyes Cartagena led the first half charge with nine first half points. Justin Dotson finished the opening 20 with eight-points.
Abbey picked up where it left off, opening the second half quickly marching its lead to 13-poitns. The Crusaders would eventually compound the lead to 17 as they continued their hot shooting. NGU would fight its way back into contention however as a late push in the final three minutes would cut the BAC lead to just six points.
Justin Dotson's three-pointer would spark a 12-4 run, as North Greenville cut Abbey's lead to 85-79. The Crusaders scored on four consecutive possessions during the quick outburst as Dotson scored 10 of the 12 points, connecting on two three's. Troy Blyden put the exclamation point on the run with a dunk as NGU looked to steal a conference road victory.
In the end though, the Crusaders from Belmont Abbey proved too much. Abbey locked down on defense in the final minute of play, limiting the streaking offense of NGU to just two more points. Abbey would connect on six free-throws to seal the victory.
Cartagena and Dotson led North Greenville with 21-points on the night, while Tommy Wade delivered 11. The Crusaders fell to 7-14 overall after the loss to Belmont Abbey. NGU will travel to Lees-McRae on Saturday afternoon for a 4pm tipoff with the Bobcats in Banner Elk, North Carolina.