By Mike Lehman, TTU Sports Information
COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – A buzzer-beating 3-pointer from Josh Williams stole what seemed to be a Golden Eagle victory Saturday evening, as Lipscomb shocked the Tennessee Tech men's basketball team in a heart-breaker, 81-79.
Trailing 79-78, Lipscomb's Garrison Mathews scooped up a loose ball after the Bisons' inbounds pass with four seconds left to play was knocked away from its target by Tech's Stephuan Adams. Mathews found an open Williams who buried the triple with two tenths of a second left.
The two sides fought tooth and nail throughout the night in a contest that featured 14 lead changes and a tied score eight times. The Golden Eagles forced 26 Lipscomb turnovers on the night, compiling 11 steals along the way, but Tech also struggled to maintain control of the ball, turning it over 21 times.
The Golden Eagles saw a slight uptick in its field goal percentage, shooting 46.7 percent from the floor while also knocking down 40.9 percent from beyond the arc. Lipscomb posted just slightly better numbers, finishing at 52.8 and 46.2 percent, respectively. Both sides struggled from the charity stripe, with Tech hitting 58.3 percent while the Bisons converted just 56.5 percent.
Williams led all scorers in the contest with 25 points, finishing 9-of-12 from the floor while junior guard Aleksa Jugovic led the Golden Eagles with 24 points. The native of Serbia finished 8-of-16 from the field and 6-for-11 from downtown. He also finished 2-for-2 from the free throw line, extending his streak to 17 consecutive makes from the stripe.
Making his debut in the Hooper Eblen Center, junior wing Curtis Phillips Jr. tallied a season-high 13 points, finishing 5-for-6 from the floor before fouling out. He also led all players with three steals. Senior guard Kajon Mack posted 18 points and six rebounds while fellow senior Hakeem Rogers concluded the night with 11 points.
The Golden Eagles will return to action in the Eblen Center Monday evening, playing host to Furman for the first time since 1997 in a 6 p.m. CT tilt.
Photo by Thomas Corhern, TTU Sports Information