EVANSVILLE, Ind. --- Senior Austin Anderson and junior Josh Gaither exploded for 23 points each while the Lees-McRae men's basketball team fell short in a shootout with Southern Indiana, 118-104, Wednesday evening in the PAC in Evansville, Ind.
The Screaming Eagles (2-1) continued their home-opening success while shooting 56.5% on the evening. The Bobcats (0-4) scored 100 points for the fourth time since the beginning of last season while Gaither (Statesville, N.C.) dropped a career high.
Coach Steve Hardin's bench came with their shooting shoes on while being responsible for 50 of the team's 104 points.
USI scored almost a quarter of its point from the charity stripe (31).
The Screaming Eagles responded with an 11-2 run following a bucket from Cortez Macklin.
Sophomore Zach Wilmoth (Dobson, N.C.) cut the deficit to one, 23-22, following a pair of deep threes.
He set a career-high in points (13) for the second consecutive night after scoring 11 against Kentucky Wesleyan.
Gaither lit the gym up when he sank three three's in a 54-second span while Isler earned the assist on two of them.
USI's Bobo Drummond and Terrence Tisdell rattled off nine consecutive points to make it 52-46.
Drummond led all scorers with 24 points while Tisdell enjoyed a double-double with 20 points and 11 boards.
Sophomore Keegan Crabtree (Hillsborough, N.C.) tied the contest at 53 with a triple at the 1:54 mark.
Anderson (Anderson, S.C.) scored five of his 23 points when he splashed a three and sank a pair of free throws early in the second half.
Drummond steered the Screaming Eagles to a 79-68 lead with a pair of threes before Wilmoth responded with one of his own.
The Bobcats cut the deficit to eight following a Chad Hicks (Winston-Salem, N.C.) jumper. Hicks finished the night with nine points and five rebounds.
USI kept the visiting squad at arm's length for the final five minutes despite another three from Anderson and a bucket from Gaither.
Isler produced a quality night with 13 points and nine assists.
LMC continues its tough November stretch when it plays Allen University Friday, Nov. 20 at 7 p.m. in the Newberry Classic in Newberry, S.C.
- LMC -