CLINTON, S.C. – Gardner-Webb spoiled Senior Day for the Presbyterian College men’s basketball team, handing the Blue Hose an 84-56 loss Saturday night at the Templeton Center. The Runnin’ Bulldogs led wire-to-wire to improve to 16-13 overall and 9-7 in the Big South, while PC falls to 5-22 and 1-15 in conference play.
Players of the Game
Will Adams led all scorers with 21 points, tying his second-best outing of the season. The senior guard shot 7-of-13 from the field, including 4-for-6 from beyond the arc, and was a perfect 3-for-3 from the free-throw line. He grabbed three rebounds and added a steal.
Gardner-Webb was paced by David Efianayi’s 15 points. The redshirt-sophomore guard went 4-for-10 from the floor, including 1-for-4 from deep, and 6-of-8 from the charity stripe. He added a pair of boards, four assists, a block, and two steals.
Stat of the Game
The Runnin’ Bulldogs had five players reach double-digit scoring, marking the second time this season an opponent has accomplished the feat. East Carolina had five players score in double figures back on December 22.
How It Happened
Gardner-Webb won the tipoff and got on the board early with an Efianayi three-pointer from the left side and a L’Hassane Niangane layup. Tyrell Nelson continued the run for the Runnin’ Bulldogs with a jumper from the right side. PC scored its first points as Adams connected from beyond the arc. Ed Drew earned a trip to the free-throw line, shooting 2-for-2 to cut the lead to 7-5 at the 17:26 mark. The visitors then scored a pair of buckets before Darius Moore got a long two to fall. After Gardner-Webb went 2-for-4 from the line, Adams knocked down a deep ball from the top of the key and Austin Venable scored a layup to cut the lead to 13-12 with 13:49 on the clock. Liam O’Reilly put up a shot from long range and then converted 1-of-2 charity shots.
Reggie Dillard followed up a missed shot, but Efianayi answered with a dunk. Jamaal Robateau then hit a trifecta to put Gardner-Webb up 22-14 with 11:12 remaining in the first half. Drew and Adams got back-to-back scores to get PC to within 22-18. Later, JC Younger found Adams on the perimeter and the senior guard knocked down his third deep ball of the game to trim Gardner-Webb’s lead to 24-23 at the 7:36 media timeout. The visitors pulled away again, though, pushing their lead to 38-27 as O’Reilly and DJ Laster made back-to-back three-pointers. Younger made a pair of free-throws and Adams hit another long-range shot, this time from the right corner, to make it 38-32 with: 46 on the clock. LaQuincy Rideau shot 1-for-2 from the charity stripe and Gardner-Webb went to the locker rooms in control 39-32.
PC shot 10-of-23 (43.5 percent) from the field, 4-for-6 (66.7 percent) from beyond the arc, and 8-of-13 (61.5 percent) from the free-throw line in the first 20 minutes of action. Adams led all scorers at the break with 14 points.
Drew scored the first points of the second half with a hook shot down low. Dillard followed with a jumper in the lane, but Rideau got the steal and the fast-break bucket for Gardner-Webb’s first points of the half. The teams traded several scores before Rideau made a pair of charity shots to give the Runnin’ Bulldogs a 47-40 lead at the 14:22 mark. Jaron Withers got to the line, going 1-for-2, but Efianayi’s fast-break dunk made it 49-41. Adams was fouled while attempting a deep ball and proceeded to make all three of his shots. Robateau responded by draining a three from the right corner.
Coming out of the 11:30 media timeout, the visitors scored six unanswered before a Dillard basket. Dillard then followed an O’Reilly three-pointer with a 1-for-2 effort from the line. Nelson got a friendly bounce to get his basket to count, and Rideau put up a layup to make it 64-47 with 8:18 left in the game. Adams hit a 15-foot jumper, but Laster tipped in his own missed shot. Drew’s fifth and final foul sent Efianayi to the charity stripe, and the redshirt-sophomore guard made both shots to push the Gardner-Webb lead to 68-49 with 6:43 to play.
Armel TeTe ended the 7-0 run by the visitors with a basket in the paint, and Venable converted 1-of-2 shots from the line to trail Garner-Webb 71-52. Adams made a fall-away jumper from the left, but Robateau hit a trifecta to give the Runnin’ Bulldogs a 20-point lead. The three-ball kicked off a 10-0 run by the guests before Stephen Osu checked in and got his first points of the night. Patrick Zeck rounded out the scoring with a late score as Gardner-Webb took the game by a final score of 84-56.
- Dillard and Drew both finished with seven points to follow Adams in scoring. Dillard shot 3-for-6 from the field and 1-of-2 from the line. The redshirt-junior guard pulled down one board with a pair of assists. Drew was 2-of-6 from the floor and 3-for-4 from the line. The senior forward added four rebounds.
- TeTe grabbed a season-high high six rebounds to lead PC on the glass. The freshman center had five rebounds against Johnson and Wales on December 1 and Coastal Georgia on December 17.
- PC shot 19-of-46 (41.3 percent) from the floor, 4-for-10 (40.0 percent) from beyond the arc, and 14-of-24 (58.3 percent) from the free-throw line.
Up NextThe Blue Hose are on the road as they head to Radford, Va. next Thursday, February 23 for a 7 p.m. ET conference matchup with the Highlanders in the Donald N. Dedmon Center.