LEXINGTON, Va. — First-year guard Mark Lamendola (Pittsburgh, Pa./Mount Lebanon) registered a season-high 18 points off the bench, and the Washington and Lee men's basketball team rallied from a 12-point deficit in the first half to defeat Bridgewater, 87-70, on Wednesday at the Duchossois Tennis Center.
Through the first 13 minutes of the game, the Generals (5-3, 1-2 ODAC) struggled to get anything going offensively, and following a three-pointer by junior guard Chandler Murray, the Eagles (2-5, 0-2 ODAC) held a 25-13 lead with 7:30 left in the first.
A free throw by sophomore forward Curtis Mitchell (Chevy Chase, Md./Georgetown Prep) at the 7:05 mark started an 8-0 run over the next two minutes for W&L, capped with a triple by senior forward Roy McMillan (Raleigh, N.C./Broughton), to pull the Blue and White to within four (25-21) with 4:43 left in the half.
Bridgewater answered with nine of the next 11 points to extend the lead back to 11, 34-23, by the 3:59 mark. W&L then drained four consecutive three-pointers, one each by Lamendola, junior guard Alex Starr (Upper Saddle River, N.J./Northern Highlands Regional), senior guard Devin Kearns (Cibolo, Texas/Samuel Clemens) and junior guard Kevin Dennin (Severna Park, Md./Severn School), to grab a 35-34 edge with 55 second remaining in the half. The Generals then entered intermission with a two-point lead (39-37).
W&L started the second half aggressively, scoring the first six points to extend its advantage to 45-37 by the 18:47 mark and forcing a Bridgewater timeout. The Blue and White slowly stretched its lead to 59-49 with 12 minutes left in the game, and then W&L again caught fire from beyond the arc.
Kearns drained a triple with 11:31 on the clock, but Bridgewater answered with a layup to put the score at 62-51 at the 11:04 mark. On the next possession, the Generals used a handoff rub screen set by Mitchell to free Dennin for a long-range bucket at the top of the arc to push the lead to 65-51.
Junior forward Davrion Grier converted a layup with 10:20 on the clock for Bridgewater, but Dennin then splashed his third triple of the contest to give the Blue and White a 68-53 margin with 9:53 to go in the contest. Back-to-back layups by McMillan and Dennin on W&L's next two trips down stretched the lead to 19 with nine minutes remaining and put the game away for the Generals.
Lamendola made 5-of-7 from beyond the arc and 6-of-10 from the floor to notch his season-high 18 points. He also had six rebounds. Kearns totaled 14 points, and had a career-high six steals and six assists. McMillan finished with 14 points, nine rebounds and three steals, and Mitchell registered eight points, 11 rebounds and five blocks.
The Generals totaled a season-high 14 three's and shot 45.2 percent (14-of-31) from downtown. The Eagles could not keep pace from distance, shooting just 6-of-22 (27.3 percent) from beyond the arc. W&L also dominated the glass, holding a 56-39 advantage in rebounding.
Sophomore guard Josh Cammon and Grier led Bridgewater with 13 points each, while sophomore guard Dimetri Chambers had nine points, five assists, five rebounds, three steals and two blocks.
The Generals will break for finals and then return to action at the Mauro Panaggio Tournament in Daytona Beach, Florida on December 16 and 17. W&L plays Nazareth on the first day of the tournament at 12:00 pm.
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