SALEM, Va. — Fifth-ranked and top-seeded Randolph-Macon went on a 15-2 run in a span of two minutes midway through the second half, and sophomore guard Buzz Anthony totaled a game-high 31 points, as the Yellow Jackets eliminated the fifth-seeded Washington and Lee men's basketball team, 65-57, in the semifinals of the ODAC Tournament on Saturday at the Salem Civic Center.
R-MC (25-2) held a 31-24 lead at halftime, but a triple by sophomore guard William Brueggeman (Houston, Texas/Strake Jesuit College Prep) on the Generals' (19-8) first possession of the second half ignited a 17-3 spurt for W&L.
Following Bruggeman's triple, senior forward Roy McMillan (Raleigh, N.C./Broughton) drained a jumper to pull the Blue and White to within two (31-19) with 18:38 on the clock. Anthony registered an old-fashioned three-point play to stretch the Yellow Jackets' lead back to five, 34-29, but McMillan immediately answered with a three-pointer.
Brueggeman then nailed consecutive triples to give W&L a 38-34 edge with 15:24 on the clock. Junior guard Kevin Dennin (Severna Park, Md./Severn School) split a pair of free throws, but then McMillan capped the run with a layup to put the Generals in front, 41-34, with 13:32 remaining in the contest.
The margin was 44-36 at the 10:33 mark, but then R-MC went on its extended run. Two straight buckets from long distance trimmed the lead to two (44-42), but a layup by sophomore forward Curtis Mitchell (Chevy Chase, Md./Georgetown Prep) momentarily halted the spurt. The Yellow Jackets then scored nine straight points to push team in front, 51-46, with eight minutes to go in the game.
The squads stayed within six points over the next six minutes, and a layup by Brueggeman cut the gap to three (58-55) with 41 seconds left in the game. After a foul by the Generals, Anthony drained two free throws, and then McMIllan missed a three-pointer with 30 seconds left. Anthony sunk 5-of-6 from the stripe in the final 30 seconds to secure the win for R-MC.
W&L shot a season-low 32.2 percent (19-of-59) from the field against a tough Yellow Jacket defense. Randolph-Macon shot 38.3 percent (23-of-60) from the floor and committed just seven turnovers compared to 17 for the Blue and White.
Brueggeman led the team with 19 points and a career-best 13 rebounds. McMillan notched 14 points and 11 rebounds, while Mitchell had eight points and nine rebounds.
Anthony had 22 of his 31 points in the second half, and he finished the game 10-of-19 from the floor and 8-of-9 from the foul line. He also had eight rebounds and three steals. Senior forward Luke Neeley finished with 14 points.
The Generals will wait and see if they earn a bid to the NCAA Tournament. W&L has an outside shot, as it entered the week fourth in the NCAA South Region Rankings. The teams and pairings for the NCAA Division III Tournament will be released on Monday, February 25.
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