LYNCHBURG, Tenn. — The Motlow Bucks will host the No. 25 team in the nation Tuesday night when Wallace State-Hanceville visits Copperweld Arena. Tipoff for the non-conference contest is scheduled for 7:30 p.m., or 20 minutes following the conclusion of the women’s game.
The Bucks (7-1, 4-1) are fresh off their first road trip of the season, where they split a pair of Tennessee Community College Athletic Association (TCCAA) games over the weekend. Despite having only five available players, the Bucks beat Cleveland State 82-78 Friday night, then led Chattanooga State until the final five minutes before falling 81-73 on Saturday.
“I’m extremely proud of the five guys who played 80 minutes in 21 hours,” said Bucks’ head coach Matt Sligh. “They led for 75 of those 80 minutes and earned a road split. We also want to thank the fans that made the trip to Chattanooga Saturday. They were really loud and we appreciate their support.”
Motlow had only five available players due to suspensions handed down as the result of an altercation last weekend during a TCCAA contest with Volunteer State. Despite the lack of any reserves, the Bucks more than held their own.
Friday in Cleveland, the Bucks were led by sophomore D’Andre Downey, who scored 20 points and pulled down 17 rebounds to go along with an amazing nine blocked shots and five assists. Clint Nwosuh led the Bucks in scoring with 28 and added seven rebounds.
Axel Magnuson scored 14 points with four rebounds and three assists, Reid Pierce had 11 points with six rebounds, and Jordan Darden scored nine points.
Saturday afternoon in Chattanooga it appeared the Bucks were headed towards a road sweep. Motlow led by as many as 15 points midway through the first half and entered the intermission with a 32-23 lead. The Bucks maintained a comfortable lead until midway through the second half when the Tigers began to apply full-court pressure.
Chattanooga whittled away at the Bucks’ lead until five minutes remained, when the Tigers took their first lead at 62-60. At that point the five Bucks, who had put on a memorable display of endurance and competitiveness, ran out of gas and the Tigers raced past them and secured the victory.
Downey led the Bucks in scoring Saturday with 23 points, joined by Nwosuh with 19. Magnuson hit four 3-point shots on his way to 16 points; Darden added nine points and Reid finished with six.
The Wallace State Lions are currently 4-2 on the young season but have played a brutal pre-conference schedule. They were ranked No. 25 in the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) preseason poll. Motlow will make a return trip to Hanceville, Ala., on Thursday, Jan. 8, 2015.
Tuesday’s games against Wallace State can be seen on the internet at www.ihigh.com/motlowstatecc and can be heard at www.theticketradio.com.
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