Robinson leads Buffs in ninth straight win

Published 9:05 am Friday, December 7, 2018

Sarah Robinson scored 12 of her team high 15 points in the second half, and the No. 25 Milligan College women’s basketball team used a 13-0 run in the third quarter and a 7-0 run in the fourth quarter to prevail, 64-57, over Appalachian Athletic Conference foe Montreat College Wednesday evening at Steve Lacy Fieldhouse.

The win kept Milligan perfect at 9-0 (7-0 AAC) this season as the Buffaloes matched their hottest start to a season since winning the first nine games in 2015-16. It also improved Milligan to 28-7 against Montreat (5-6, 4-4 AAC) in the last 15 seasons. Milligan remained half a game back of the conference lead.

The Buffaloes were on the ropes early in the second half. A slow start saw them trail 12-8 at the end of the first quarter and 23-18 at the break. Montreat extended the lead to as many as 12 two minutes into the second half and looked to be on the verge of snapping Milligan’s eight-game winning streak until a 13-0 run brought the Buffs back into the game.

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Kaely Gose and Emma Kate Brown hit back-to-back 3-pointers during the run, and Robinson tied the game with a reverse layup under the basket, assisted by Gose, making it 34-34.

Milligan and Montreat traded baskets and leads back and forth over the next several minutes until a 7-0 Milligan run put the Buffs into the lead for good. Freshman Hannah Wyrick hit a triple from the wing during the run, and Robinson scored a basket to cap it at 57-50 with roughly two minutes left.

Milligan led by at least six the rest of the way.

Robinson’s team high 15 points came alongside 10 rebounds for her third double-double of the season. She added an assist, three blocks and two steals.

Two other Buffaloes reached double figures. Andi Lamb scored 14 points with five rebounds; Brown scored 12 points and added six rebounds and three assists.

The game featured six ties and four lead changes. Milligan was 8-of-32 (25 percent) from the field in the first half, compared to 14-of-26 (53.8 percent) in the second half.

For Montreat, which entered the day having won four of its last six, Aliyah Thomas led all scorers with 17 points off the bench.

Milligan returns home Saturday for an AAC showdown versus Columbia College at 2 p.m. The game will mark the last chance to catch the Buffs at Steve Lacy Fieldhouse until 2019.

Men’s basketball stumble in second half, fall at home

Despite an Aaron Levarity double-double, the Milligan College men’s basketball team dropped their second straight game as they fell 73-63 to No. 25 Montreat in an Appalachian Athletic Conference battle Wednesday night inside Steve Lacy Fieldhouse.

The loss dropped the Buffaloes to 22-9 in the regular season against Montreat over the last 15 seasons. Milligan now sits at 6-5 overall (3-4 AAC), while the Cavaliers improved to 7-2 (6-1 AAC).

Milligan headed into the halftime break with a 31-28 advantage, but the lead would not hold for long as the Cavaliers quickly scored seven of the first ten points in the second to regain the advantage at the 18:17 mark. The Buffs managed to stay within striking distance, but after Will Buckner tied the game at 49 all, the Cavaliers followed with a game clinching 10-0 run.

The 10-0 stretch lasted for over four minutes and ended on a made three by Mike Featherston at the five minute mark. Milligan got as close as four points with 1:21 remaining on a layup by Levarity, but that would be the closest the Buffs would get as Montreat put the game away from the foul line.

Levarity, a senior forward, finished with 14 points and 12 rebounds for his ninth double-double of the season. The senior finished 6-of-10 from the field and added in two steals and a block on the night.

Entering the contest, Levarity led the AAC in both rebounds and points per game, while holding three top three national rankings in offensive rebounds per game, total rebounds per game and total rebounds.

Redshirt junior Tyler Nichols was the only other Buff in double figures as he supplied 13 points. Featherston followed with eight points, while Jacob Cawood, Desean Green, Tyler Faulkenberry and Will Buckner each finished with six.

As a team, the Buffs shot 43.1 percent from the field but struggled from deep finishing 4-of-18 from behind the arc. Milligan had shot 52 percent from three over their last two contests coming into tonight.

Montreat knocked in 24 of their 55 attempts and similarly to the Buffs struggled from 3-point range finishing 3-of-19 on the evening. The Cavaliers really took advantage at the free throw line netting 22 makes out of 32 attempts compared to Milligan’s 9-of-14.

Jeron Hemphill and Nicodemus Payne led Montreat with 16 each. Hemphill added in 11 rebounds for a double-double. Terrell Sheffey contributed with 15 points and seven rebounds for the Cavaliers.

Overall, both teams finished with 15 turnovers. There were 10 lead changes and nine ties throughout the contest.

Milligan will remain at home as they step out of conference play for a matchup against Toccoa Falls Friday at 7:30 p.m. The Buffs defeated the Screaming Eagles 96-62 on the road back on Nov. 3.