Radford men’s basketball falls on Senior Day

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Michael Marzzacco | mmarzzacco@radford.edu

Radford did exactly what they have done the last two weeks, win a thriller on the road and lose a heartbreaker at home. This week, the Highlanders rallied to beat Campbell on Thursday night before falling at Dedmon Center on Saturday afternoon against Longwood on Senior Day.

Thursday, Radford used a 7-0 run to close the game to beat Campbell 60-56. A dunk by Brandon Holcomb with 41 seconds left broke the tie at 56. Rashun Davis had the assist on the dunk which gave Radford their first lead since early in the second half. Over the game’s final 10:18, the Highlanders outscored the Fighting Camels 22-5. Campbell would try a desperation three, but it rimmed out. Holcomb got the rebound and hit a pair of free throws to seal the Radford victory.

In the first half, Radford held the biggest lead at 22-16 before Campbell got hot. The Camels took a 31-29 lead into the locker room and went up by double digits in the second half.

Trailing 51-38, Cameron Jones hit two threes to put Radford back in the game, which led to a 9-0 run to tie the game at 53. Four of those points were by Davis. Ed Polite, Jr. also had a basket and a pull-up jumper by Jones in transition tied the game with 4:50 left.

Radford would go on to score the game’s final seven points to complete the comeback and get the win 60-56. Jones led the way with 13 points, 11 from the second half, and hit three clutch three-pointers in the rally. Polite, Jr. had 12 points and led the Highlanders in rebounds with eight. Holcomb and Davis each finished with 10 points.

Saturday afternoon was Senior Day at Dedmon Center as Radford honored Kion Brown, Taj Owens, Cameron Jones, Rashun Davis, Kyle Gonzalez, and Brandon Holcomb prior to the game.  It was also alumni day as former Radford basketball greats were recognized at halftime.

Radford squandered a 20 point lead in the second half as they fell to Longwood 92-81. Taking a 45-37 lead at the half and going up 59-39 five minutes into the second half, the Lancers went on a furious comeback by going on a 22-5 run. They took the lead with six minutes left with a three by Tra’vaughn White.

Justin Cousin posted a career-high 24 points, a bright spot in a tough defeat. Thanks to hitting seven of 13 three-pointers, he doubled his previous career-high in points. The seven three’s were the most by a Radford player in a single game this season. As a team, Radford hit 13 from behind the arc.

Radford took their final lead of the game, 79-77, with Cousin’s last three. However, Longwood closed out the game on a 15-2 run.

“Give credit to Longwood. They fought, they wanted it, and they were very aggressive. We have to put the regular season behind us. The non-conference is one season. The conference schedule is another,” said head coach Mike Jones. “Now, we enter our third season: The postseason. This is what it all comes down to… how well can we play in March and in the conference tournament next week.”

Jones and Davis also finished with double-figures for the Highlanders with 18 and 12 points respectively. Radford finished with 18 assists, eight of those were dished out by Davis.

Radford finished their season with a 16-14 overall record and a 9-9 record in the Big South, good for the seventh seed in the Big South Tournament. They will face 10-seed Presbyterian in the first round on Thursday. The Highlanders will look to avenge a 69-68 loss in the teams’ only meeting this season. Tip off is at 4:30 p.m. and you can catch the game online on the Big South Network.

Courtesy of Radford Athletics
Courtesy of Radford Athletics