ASHEVILLE, N.C. – The Presbyterian College men’s basketball team hit six free throws, including a career-high four by Danny Herrera, in the second half to rally back from a 22-point deficit to within 10, but ran out of time as UNC Asheville came away with the 84-70 win this afternoon at Kimmel Arena in Asheville, N.C.
PC, which tied Asheville, 41-41 in the second half, falls to 4-13 overall and 0-2 in the Big South while Asheville improves to 8-8, 2-0. The Blue Hose continue their road swing with a 7:30 match-up at Charleston Southern Wednesday, Jan. 15.
While Jordan Downing led the team with 18 points, Herrera had the career day with his four three-pointers to give him 17 points for the game, just one shy of his career-best. Reggie Dillard connected on 12, just one shy of his best as well. William Truss paced the squad with 10 rebounds.
Andrew Rowsey led Asheville with 18 points, followed by D.J. Cunningham with his 13 points and team-leading 18 rebounds.
The Bulldogs shot 48.4% for the game, and were 16-of-31 in the first half. PC shot 41.0% for the game and was seven-of-14 from the perimeter after hitting just one-of-seven in the first half.
The Blue Hose recorded just eight turnovers compared to 12 for Asheville, while the Bulldogs controlled the boards, 50-26, including a 31-18 advantage on the defensive end.
PC connected on 12-of-21 free throws, while Asheville was 18-of-21.
Asheville used an 11-2 run, capped by five straight from Cunningham, midway through the first half to turn a one-point lead into a 10-point margin, 20-10, with 10:35 remaining in the first half. The Bulldogs extended the lead to 11 before four unanswered by Truss and Dillard cut the margin to seven, 26-19, with 5 and a half to go before the break.
The Bulldogs hit two three-pointers in an 8-0 run to extend the lead back to double-digits, 34-19, with just under four on the clock. Downing’s three-pointer, his first of the night, ended the drought to cut it to 12.
UNC Asheville out-scored PC 7-3 the next two minutes to go up by 16, 41-25. The final minute of play, PC hit four free throws in a row to cut the lead at intermission to 14, 43-29.
A Bulldog 12-4 run, including an 8-0 stretch, to open the second half gave Asheville its largest lead of the game, 55-35 with 15:10 to go. Herrera’s basket at 14:57 snapped the run.
Downing and Herrera hit back to back three-pointers to cut the Asheville lead to 14, 55-41, with 13:59 to go. Herrera added two more three-pointers the next three minutes to keep the margin at 14, 62-48, with 11:22 on the clock.
Trailing by 19, PC used two three-pointers by Herrera in a 9-2 run to cut Asheville’s lead to its smallest of the half at 12, 72-60, with 6:42 remaining.
A downing three-pointer and Herrera free throw, as part of a 6-0 run, cut the margin to 10, 78=68, with 2:31 to go.
Asheville hit four straight free throws and added a basket down the stretch to quell the Blue Hose rally and take the 84-70 win.