by Lions Sports Information Department
Lincoln, PA - Virginia Union built a 29-point lead during the first half and never looked back as they handed the Lincoln University men's basketball team its third consecutive loss, 83-64 Saturday afternoon at Manuel Rivero Hall.
The Lions, who have now lost six out of their last seven, fall to 7-17 overall and 5-9 in Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association games. The first place and regionally ranked (#7) Panthers improve to 21-5 overall and 13-1 in CIAA games.
Carlton Allen (Trenton, N.J./Manhattan College) and Sean James (Newark, Del./Iona College) led Lincoln with 18 points apiece, with James scoring all of his points from beyond the three-point arc (6-12 3FG). Allen also led the team with eight rebounds. Blair Davis (Baltimore Md./Baltimore City College HS) had a team-high five assists.
Eleven different players scored for the Panthers, led by Ray Anderson's 22 points. James Paige added 11. John Mitchell led the team with eight rebounds while chipping in eight points. Anderson had a team-high five assists.
The game was close for the first 3:13 when the two teams exchanged the lead twice and held three ties. After a dunk by Allen put Lincoln up 4-2, the Panthers went on a tear, scoring 18 straight points to take a 20-4 lead and followed that with a 13-4 flourish to complete a monstrous 33-4 uprising and take a 33-8 lead with 8:21 left in the half. Lincoln followed with back-to-back baskets for the first time in the half to pull within 21 33-12 before another run by the Panthers, this one a 12-4 spurt to give the visitors their largest lead of the game at 29 points, 45-16 with 2:12 left in the half. Lincoln scored the final eight points of the half with James Richardson (Jersey City, N.J./Raritan Valley Community College) getting the first three on a traditional three-point play, Allen adding two on free throws and James connecting on the first of his career high six three-pointers as the Lions closed within 21 45-24 at halftime.
The Panthers lead was at 22 early in the second half when the Lions started to show some life, embarking on an 11-4 spurt fueled by three 3-balls from James to close within 15, 55-40 with 13:35 left in the period. Less than four minutes later though, VUU had the lead back up over 20 again, leading 61-40 with 89:43 left in the game. Lincoln never brought the lead back down under twenty until Umar Saaba's (Philadelphia, Pa./Boys Latin HS) layup+one shaved the deficit to 18 with 1:48 left to go in the game, 78-60. Lincoln would cut only one more point off the lead before the Panthers added a basket in the final seconds to secure the 19-point win.
The Panthers outscored the Lions 50-22 in the paint and 32-11 off turnovers, taking advantage of a season-high 24 Lincoln turnovers. VUU also shot 59.3% (32-54) from the field while the Lions made just 23-58 (39.7%). Lincoln did have a slight edge on the glass outrebounding the Panthers 32-31.
The Lions return to action on Wednesday, February 15, 2017 when they host Chowan university. Tipoff is set for 7:30 p.m.