BOCA RATON, Fla. – Lynn University's men's basketball team saw a large second-half lead quickly falter away in the late stages of the game Wednesday night, but the Fighting Knights were able to hold on and fend off Nova Southeastern University at home for a 72-65 Sunshine State Conference victory.
INSIDE THE MATCHUP:
Final: Lynn 72, Nova Southeastern 65
Records: Lynn (10-8, 4-6 SCC), Nova Southeastern (7-11, 3-7 SSC)
Location: de Hoernle Sports and Cultural Center | Boca Raton, Fla.
Series: Lynn leads 20-16 (last meeting Nov. 18, 2015 – L, 88-84)
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HOW IT HAPPENED:
- David Johnson controlled the opening tip before teaming up with Russell Wilson and Fred Landers to help the Fighting Knights start with a 12-0 run. Harrison Goodrick finally broke the trend in the fifth minute of play, helping the Sharks to slow Lynn's offensive onslaught. Nova was able to cut its deficit to six, only to see Jamal Palmer become the third Lynn player to knock down a shot from behind the arc. Johnson was one of eight Fighting Knights to find the bottom of the net in the first half, as his 11 points led all scorers. Goodrick posted a double-double in the game's first 20 minutes, but Vieux Kande converted an and-one play just before the horn to give Lynn a 38-24 halftime advantage.
- The Fighting Knights scored six of the first nine points after the intermission, and put the foot on the gas from there. Lynn was able to extend its lead to as many as 19 with excellent ball movement, and Fred Landers became the second Lynn player to find his way into double-figure scoring after making a contested layup. Goodrick and Chris Page fueled a 15-0 NSU run that tied the game at 59 with three minutes to play, but Johnson and Landers combined to score seven key points in a span of less than fifty seconds. With Nova forced to foul down the stretch, Landers and Ben Berry sank the last four free throws for the Blue & White in the waning seconds. Johnson put an exclamation point on the win with a last-second block as Lynn held on for its second consecutive SSC victory.
STATS OF THE GAME:
- Johnson played all but four minutes and produced a solid all-around game, recording a team-high 19 points and a game-high four blocks, along with six boards, three assists and two steals.
- Landers finished with 16 points and four rebounds, while Berry fell shy of the double-double with 11 points and eight boards.
- Wilson and Allen Baez dished out five helpers apiece.
- The Fighting Knights shot well above their season average at the charity stripe.
- Goodrick was on fire for Nova, totaling 25 points, 17 boards and four assists.
BEYOND THE BOXSCORE:
- Despite 14 players seeing action on the floor, Nova recorded only four points off the bench.
- Landers reached double-figures yet again, extending his streak to 19 games dating back to last season.
- The Fighting Knights never trailed in the game.
The Fighting Knights remain at home this Saturday, Jan. 30 when they host nationally-ranked Barry University at 4 p.m.