BANNER ELK, N.C. --- Three players scored at least 20 points to lead the Brevard College men's basketball team to a 109-100 shootout win over Lees-McRae College in non-conference play on Saturday evening in Williams Gymnasium, as the Tornados outscored the Bobcats by a 53-45 margin in the first half.
Brevard (2-6) posted a blistering field goal percentage of 60.7 percent on the night, including a 64 percent clip in the second half, as Lees-McRae (0-9) shot 51.5 percent from the floor in the contest. Lees-McRae edged the Tornado by a 31-29 margin on the glass, including a 14-9 advantage on the offensive boards, as the teams connected on a combined 27 three-pointers.
Daniel Sepokas (Illawong, Australia) led the Bobcats with a game-high 31 points, including 19 markers in the second half, while connecting on 11-of-18 attempts from the field and going 5-for-8 from behind the arc. The senior guard nearly posted a double-double in the contest, recording a game-high nine assist while hauling in a squad-best six rebounds.
Chad Eppley (Boone, N.C.) turned in an impressive performance of his own for the Bobcats, pouring in a career-high 21 points with an 8-for-13 night from the floor, including a 4-for-6 clip from downtown. Jeremiah Henry (Semmes, Ala.) added 13 points, as Asad Lamot (Mebane, N.C.) and DJ Brown (Anderson, S.C.) chipped in 11 and 10 markers, respectively.
Gerel Simmons led the way for Brevard, coming off the bench to equal Sepokas' game-high of 31 points with a 7-for-11 night from the floor and a 13-for-14 clip for the charity stripe, while also knocking down 4-of-5 attempts from behind the arc.
Alex Moe and Dominique Pickett added 23 points and 22 points, respectively, as Pickett dished out seven assists and notched a game-high five steals. Simmons hauled down a game-high eight rebounds, while Manzey Miller chipped in 16 points on 6-of-13 shooting.
The game opened with a flurry, as Lees-McRae kicked off the contest with an 11-5 run before Moe knocked down a three-pointer to start the Tornados on an 8-2 spurt that evened the tally at 13-13. Lees-McRae countered quickly with a 10-0 run, opening a 23-13 lead on back-to-back triples by Corey Young (Bluff City, Tenn.) and Eppley with 12:08 remaining in the half.
Brevard would answer with a 14-2 surge, claiming a 27-25 advantage following a layup by Filip Gujanicic at the 8:01 mark. The Bobcats countered with a 3-0 spurt before Brevard responded once again with a 14-3 run, pushing the margin to 39-31 on a pair of Simmons freebies with 4:50 left in the period. The Tornados would maintain the advantage for the remainder of the period, as Miller knocked down a buzzer-beating three-pointer to send Brevard into the intermission with a 53-45 lead.
The Tornado carried the momentum into the second half, opening the period with an 8-2 run to push the advantage to 61-47 on a trey by Moe with 17:59 to play. Lees-McRae would slowly chip away over the next eight minutes, cutting the lead to 79-73 with a 26-18 run that was capped by a Young three-pointer with 10:30 left on the clock.
The Bobcats stayed within striking distance, trimming the margin to 94-89 on a clutch triple by Lamot to cap an 8-4 spurt with 3:31 to go. Brown followed with a big-time three-pointer of his own at the 1:52 mark, cutting the advantage to 96-93 with his third triple of the day.
Brevard would answer with a 6-1 spurt, pushing the lead to 102-94 with 42 seconds left as the Tornados converted seven of eight free throw attempts in the final minute to close out the hard-fought 109-100 win.
Lees-McRae returns to the court on Wednesday, January 2, 2013 when the Bobcats host Tusculum College in a non-conference matchup at 7:30 p.m. in Williams Gymnasium.
- LMC -