Men's hoops drops 72-67 decision to Gardner-Webb

Jan. 19, 2006

Final Stats

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - So close, yet so far away.

That's the story for the Jacksonville men's basketball team as four Gardner-Webb players scored in double figures, led by Brain Bender's game-high 26, to beat JU, 72-67 in Atlantic Sun Conference play on Thursday night.

Jacksonville (1-15, 1-9 A-Sun) dropped its 13th straight game despite Marcus Allen scoring a career-high 19 points and pulling down 11 rebounds for his fourth double-double of the season.

"We played hard tonight," said JU head coach Cliff Warren. "We battled but we just didn't get the defensive stops when we needed, not just at the end of the game but throughout the game."

Jacksonville also got 12 points from Antonio Cool and 10 points from Mario Brown. Brown also swatted a season-high four shots.

The Bulldogs (7-9, 4-5 A-Sun) hit 50 percent of their shots in the second half and went to the free throw line 16 times, hitting 13. The Dolphins stayed close in the second half despite hitting just 38 percent of their shots in the half.

Jacksonville fell behind by 10 in the first eight minutes on Bender's first 3-pointers of the game, 21-11.

The Dolphins came roaring back, going on a 19-6 run to take a 30-27 lead courtesy of a 15-foot jumper by Allen with just four minutes left in the half.

The Bulldogs answered by out scoring JU 10-2 over the last four minutes to take a 37-32 lead at the half.

In the second half, Gardner-Webb pushed the lead to 10 in the first six minutes, capping the run on layup by Bender.

Jacksonville fired back by scoring the next 10 points, with a 3-pointer by Allen, a 3-point play by Conerly and baskets by Cool and Brown to tie the game at 47 with 11:55 left in the game.

Gardner-Webb showed why they were the preseason pick to win the league over the next five minutes. The Bulldogs got the lead again and pushed it to eight, hitting six straight free throws during the run.

The Dolphins made one last run, cutting it to three twice, once on Allen's third 3-pointer of the night and the last time coming on Cool's second 3-poitner of the night.

Gardner-Webb answered both shots with baskets, a 3-point by Bender to push the lead back to six and the last time on a jumper by T.J. McCullough with 19 seconds left to put the game away.

The Bulldogs also got double-digit scoring efforts from Simon Conn with 16 points, Chris Gash with 12 and Tim Jennings with 13 points and 10 rebounds.

The loss for Jacksonville breaks the school-record for the longest streak in JU history. The previous record was 12, held by the 1982-83.

Jacksonville returns to the hardwood on Saturday at 3 p.m. in the second half of a doubleheader against Campbell.