CHARLOTTE, N.C. – The Lees-McRae College men's basketball team gave the seventh-ranked team in the nation, Queens University of Charlotte, all it could but ultimately fell by a score of 96-93 Saturday night in Charlotte. The loss moves LMC's record to 2-1 on the 2019-20 season.
The opening 20 minutes were a mixed bag for the Bobcats. In the first 10 minutes of the game, the Bobcats were able to hang with the Royals as they trailed by just two points with nine minutes to go in the first half. Despite Lees-McRae's initial defensive effort against the potent Queens offense being solid, the Royals started to separate thanks to second chance opportunities. Queens netted 17 second chance points in the first half alone on its way to building a lead as many as 15 points over Lees-McRae. LMC was able to close the gap some heading into halftime with the Royals taking 53-42 lead into the intermission.
Lees-McRae showed a ton of fight in the final 20 minutes of Saturday's matchup. There were a few times that it looked like the Royals might start getting on a roll but the Bobcats continued to press on and continue their comeback attempt. Eventually, the Bobcats closed the Royal lead to just one point with just 4:13 to go in regulation. The two teams continued to grind out the final four minutes of action until Kamil Williams banked in a three-pointer to pull Lees-McRae with one point again 94-93 with 15 seconds to go. After the made three by Williams, Queens knocked down a pair of key free throws and gave the Bobcats a chance to force overtime with 10 second to go. Lees-McRae had a pair of three-pointers rim out as the final seconds ticked off the clock as the Royals escaped with a 96-93 victory to remain unbeaten.
The tandem of Williams and Quay Kimble both had stellar nights for the Bobcats. Williams finished the night a team-high 25 points in the contest. Kimble wasn't far behind finishing with 23 points on a 7-for-14 effort from the field. Anthony Hicks finished with 10 points as the only other Bobcats that finished in double figures, while Andrew Gardner grabbed a team-high nine rebounds to pace the effort on the glass.
The Bobcats will look to get back into the win column on Sunday when it takes on Tusculum University in Charlotte. Tip-off between the Bobcats and Pioneers is scheduled for 4 p.m.