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In the men's game, Wesleyan had trimmed a 13-point deficit to three with five minutes to play before Bryan answered with an 11-2 run, fueled by three 3-point buckets from Lions post Scott Newman, to open a 12-point gap and eased away to a 70-57 win.
"I don't care what the sport is, the difference in winning and losing is making plays - getting a stop on defense, pulling down a rebound or knocking down a shot at the right time," said Wesleyan men's Coach Mike Poe. "Our guys did a great job of getting themselves back in it, but when it came down to winning the game, Bryan made the big plays."
Lions 70, Bulldogs 57
Matt Harper hit two 3-pointers and Justin Hicks one to keep Wesleyan even through the first 10 minutes at 15. Jesse Booher's "3" and two free throws from Sean Bridges snapped a deadlock at 19 and put TWC up 24-19 at the 4:39 mark. It was obvious from the outset, Bryan did not intend to let senior post Matt Towry, TWC's leading scorer, become a factor, often doubling him to deny the pass inside. When the perimeter shots stopped falling, TWC's slide began. Bryan closed the half with a 15-5 run and led 34-29.
Harper opened the second half with a trey, but Bryan then pulled away to lead 47-34 after six minutes. Wesleyan came out of a timeout by scoring six points in just 31 seconds, an offensive put-back by Harper and two Andy Cooper buckets following steals. Six straight points by Towry brought Wesleyan within three at 49-46 with just over five minutes to play. Cooper, however, had the only bucket over the next two minutes as Bryan opened a 60-48 lead behind the shooting of Newton. A three-point play by Hicks stemmed the flow temporarily, but it couldn't slow the Lions as they pulled away.
Bridges netted 12 points, Harper 11 and Towry 10 for the Bulldogs. Sophomore guard E'Jay Ward had nine rebounds, but TWC was out-rebounded 39-26.
Newton paced Bryan (13-6, 4-1) with 26 points while Xavierian McCall, Lavonte Henderson and Carrin Nash added 12 each.
WESLEYAN (57): Booher 3, Hicks 8, Powers, Bridges 12, Ward 3, Kirk, Harper 11, Cooper 8, Gregory 2, Towry 10.
BRYAN (70): Clements 1, Whitmore, Batt, Decker, Newton 26, Bauer 8, McCall 12, Henderson 12, McKay, Nash.