February 17, 2014

W&L Men's Basketball Dispatched by Lynchburg, 86-76

LYNCHBURG, Va. – Lynchburg College closed the first half with a 20-4 run en route to claiming an 86-76 victory over Washington and Lee in ODAC men's basketball action on Monday evening at Turner Gym.

For the second straight game, the Generals (6-17, 3-11) opened up an early advantage, jumping out to a 7-0 lead in the initial 2:37 of the game on a pair of layups followed by a three-pointer from first-year guard Andy Kleinlein (Chesterfield, Mo. / Chaminade College Prep).

W&L held the lead until the 10:59 mark of the opening half when Lynchburg (17-6, 10-4) sophomore forward Omar Kemp completed an old fashioned three-point play for a 13-11 advantage.  The two teams then exchanged the lead four times over the ensuing 3:43 until the Hornets assumed the lead for good (19-18) on a jumper by senior forward Gary Boone II with 7:16 to play.

The Generals kept it a two possession game and trailed just 24-23 with 5:08 remaining when the Hornets used their game-deciding run that led to a 17-point (44-27) halftime lead.  W&L committed three turnovers and hit just 1-of-3 shots from the floor during the stretch, while LC senior guard Manny Hernandez scored 12 points including a dunk with just over a minute left and a three-pointer with two seconds remaining before the break.

W&L opened the second half with a 6-0 run on three-pointers by sophomore forward Andrew Franz (Charlotte, N.C. / Ravenscroft) and junior forward Jim Etling (Loveland, Colo. / Loveland) to slice it to an 11-point game just 2:25 into the second stanza, but the Hornets maintained a double-digit advantage until six straight points from Franz cut it to a 58-51 game with 8:52 left the play.  The Generals continued to chip away at the lead, eventually cutting it to five points (79-74) on a layup by junior forward Patrick O'Connor (Richmond, Va. / Douglas Freeman) with 53 seconds left, but W&L could get no closer in falling for the fourth straight game.

As a team, the Generals shot 24-of-56 (.429) from the floor and 20-of-24 (.833) from the foul line.  W&L also committed just 12 turnovers, including a mere three in the second half.  However, the Hornets shot 50.0 percent (29-58) from the floor and held a 39-24 advantage on the glass.

Franz paced W&L with 24 points on 9-of-22 shooting from the floor.  Etling tied his career-high in points (15), rebounds (5) and assists (5), while O'Connor and sophomore guard Franklin Wolfe (Raleigh, N.C. / Sanderson) scored nine points each.  For Wolfe, the total also tied his career-high for scoring. 

Sophomore forward Alex Graves led the Hornets with 24 points and 11 rebounds on 9-of-10 shooting from the field.  Hernandez added 23 points as well. 

Washington and Lee returns to action on Wednesday when it travels back to Lynchburg for a for a 7:00 pm contest at Randolph College.

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