BUENA VISTA, Va. — The Southern Virginia University men's basketball team suffered a heartbreaking loss Tuesday night against Roanoke College, falling 79-76 in front of a loud home crowd.
In the first half, the Knights (1-4) and the Maroons (4-2, 1-0) maintained close contact with back-and-forth scoring. The Maroons led or tied a majority of the half with a five-point lead with one minute remaining 32-27. The Knights would close out the half tying the game at 32-32 on an Alec Johnson's three-pointer and two free throws.
Roanoke shot 44 percent from the field and from deep at a 54.5 percent clip, compared to the Knights 48 % from the floor and 40 percent from three-point range.
The Maroons looked to break away from the Knights in the second half building their largest lead of the game up 12 with the score 71-59 when the Knights fought back late in the game to bring the game within one point with under a minute left on the clock.
The Knights effort would be cut short by the Maroons with two big free throws from Josh Freund, extending the lead to three,79-76 with three seconds remaining. The Knights would have a last-second heave but were unable to get the shot off as the time expired, giving the Knights their fourth loss of the season.
Josh Freund of Roanoke led all scorers with 32 points, while the Knights they were led by junior guard Jamier Cross who netted 22 points along with five assists. Trey Dill and Tyler McCreadie both hit double-figures scoring for the Knights with 14 and 10 for the night. Alec Johnson added another all-around performance leading the team in both rebounds (8) and assists (6).
The bench once again played well for the Knights as they outscored the Maroons 20-9 with a majority of the scoring coming from Sam Armstong with seven points and Jaron Anderson with eight. The Knights also shot better from field 54.5 percent to 48.2 percent. Roanoke was able to capitalize on the Knight turnovers, attributing to 19 points versus the Knights three.
"I am proud of the fight in our team tonight, there were moments late in the game where we could have given up or hang our heads but instead we regrouped and worked through those obstacles," said Head Coach Greg Winslow. "Even though tonight was a tough loss, we matured in many aspects of the game. We hope to sustain our effort on the road and keep moving forward."
The Knights will hit the road and compete a two-day tournament, the Roger Taylor Invitational where they will face Mid-Atlantic Christian on the first day Friday, Nov. 30 at 6 p.m.