The Spring Hill College men's basketball team avenged a loss at Dillard University earlier this month by bouncing back on Monday night with a 70-63 win over the Bleu Devils at the Arthur R. Outlaw Recreation Center.
The Badgers dominated play in the first half and jumped out to an 11-0 lead before Dillard's Jermille Fluker lit their side of the scoreboard with a 3-point bucket eight minutes into the contest.
Spring Hill maintained a comfortable lead throughout the first period and took a 32-21 cushion into the halftime locker room.
Dillard stormed back in the second half, however, and cut the SHC advantage to just one point with 11:29 left on the clock when Myron McGowan put back an offensive rebound to make it 41-40.
SHC regrouped and a big 3-point bucket by junior Stephen Burches of Hammond, La., pushed the Badgers back out to a 5-point lead at 53-48 with seven minutes remaining.
With just 20 seconds remaining and the Badgers holding a 66-54 lead, the game appeared to be over, but Dillard would not call it quits and three quick 3-pointers by the Bleu Devils made it 68-63 with 9 seconds left on the clock.
But two free throws by freshman guard Brandon Blake of Oxford, Miss., with 4 seconds remaining salted away the victory for the Badgers who moved to 2-3 on the season.
Blake was the Badgers' high scorer with 14 points while Burches added 13 to the cause. Freshman Charles Gordon of Birmingham, Ala., recorded a double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds for SHC.
Terry Church scored 15 for Dillard while Fluker scored 12 points.
As a team, the Badgers shot 39.3% (22-56) and 29.4% (5-17) from 3-point territory, but committed 23 turnovers in the face of nine steals by Dillard's defense. Spring Hill won the battle of the boards with a 49-35 advantage in rebounds.
Dillard (4-4) was 32.8% (20-61) overall from the field and 29.2% (7-24) in 3-point shots.
Spring Hill will next play Brewton-Parker College (1-4) at the Outlaw Recreation Center on Saturday at 4 p.m.