By Raymond Radford| firstname.lastname@example.org
After losing back-to-back games against Winthrop, the Radford Men’s Basketball team looked for retribution against Gardner-Webb this past Wednesday and Thursday in the Highlanders’ Big South regular-season finale.
Feb. 17 was senior night as Radford recognized seniors Jordan Hemphill and Bryan Hart for their contributions to the team.
Radford started the game with an 8-6 lead, but Gardner-Webb would pull away with a 14-2 run.
The remainder of the first half did not go well for Radford as Gardner-Webb had a 58.6 percent FG percentage and shot 63.6 percent from the three-point range.
Heading into the second half, Radford held Gardner-Webb to 27 points and shooting 22.2 percent from beyond the arc.Heading into the second half, Radford held Gardner-Webb to 27 points and shooting 22.2 percent from beyond the arc.
This was not enough as Gardner-Webb kept Radford at bay, winning 69-57.
Fah’Mir Ali led the team, scoring 11 points. Lewis Djonkam and Xavier Lipscomb each had 10 points.
The next game would see the Highlanders’ worst Big South loss since 2011.
Radford could not get anything going as Gardner-Webb outperformed the Highlanders on both sides of the ball.
Quinton Morton-Robertson led the team with 13 points, four threes. Dravon Mangum added 10 points in the 77-49 loss.
The Highlanders shot a season-low of 29.8 percent and kept to shooting 29.2 percent from the three-point range.The Highlanders shot a season-low of 29.8 percent and kept to shooting 29.2 percent from the three-point range.
Head Coach Mike Jones knew how rough this loss is for his team and hopes a break will help.
“We got to take a few days off. I think these last few games has made us do a little soul searching,” said Jones, “Taking some time to look in the mirror as individuals, reassessing our situations, and taking some time off to clear our heads a little bit.”
Radford has now lost four straight games and is no longer in contention to win the Big South regular-season title.
The Highlanders will finish their Big South conference schedule with a 12-6 record, one game ahead of UNC Asheville and Campbell for the second seed in the Big South tournament with quarterfinals starting Mar. 1.
Jones hopes to have one more non-conference game as a tune-up for the Big South tournament.
“We hope to find an opponent outside of the league to play as either a scrimmage, exhibition, or even as a real game,” said Jones.An extended break before the tournament is not in the plans for Jones and his team.
An extended break before the tournament is not in the plans for Jones and his team.
“By taking all of that time and not playing a game, that would be a big disadvantage for our team going into the tournament,” said Jones.
Radford will find out next week who they will be playing in the quarterfinals in the Big South Tournament.