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UMW Men's Basketball Tops Randolph in Thriller, 78-76

UMW Men's Basketball Tops Randolph in Thriller, 78-76

In a thrilling conclusion that included seven lead changes in the final two minutes, the University of Mary Washington men's basketball team defeated Randolph College, 78-76, on Monday night in Lynchburg, Va. The Eagles improve to 5-2 on the season.

The host Wildcats jumped out to an 11-0 lead to start the contest, and the Eagles played from behind for much of the action. Randolph ran the lead to as many as 15 points, before the Eagles began cutting into the deficit. A three-pointer from senior Riley Welch cut the deficit to 34-28 with 4:48 remaining. The Eagles finished the half on a 6-2 run to draw to within five, at 41-36.

In the second half, the teams battled back and forth throughout, with the mrgin running between five and 10 points for much of the action. UMW used layups from seniors Anias Suanders and Ra'Shawn Cook, and a thee-pointer from senior guard Da'Shawn Cook, to erase a seven-point deficit. A jumper by Ra'Shawn Cook gave the Eagles the lead for the first time with 1:59 remaining, and the lead swung back and forth seven times from there. 

A three-pointer from Da'Shawn Cook with six seconds left turned a one-point deficit to a two-point lead, and the Eagles held on for the victory.

The Cook twins led the Eagles with 15 points apiece, while Emmanuel Aghayere added 11 points, and Welch 10. UMW shot 46.3% from the field (31-67), making 10-27 three-point attempts and 6-16 free throws. Randolph shot 49.2% (30-61), with 8-20 shooting on three point attempts and 8-14 from free throws. Randolph led in rebounds, 40-37.

The Eagles will return to action on Sunday when they visit Virginia Wesleyan University at 2:00 p.m.