The Louisburg College Men's Basketball team survived a slow start to get by visiting Richard Bland College, 75-69, on Wednesday night inside an electric Roger Taylor Arena. The win runs the Hurricanes overall record to 19-4 including a 12-2 mark in Region X play. With the win the Canes also extend their season-long winning streak to 12 games on their home hardwood.
In a game that started slowly, RBC scored the first points of the game at the 17:34 mark of the first half to spark an 11-1 run before Louisburg used an 8-1 run of their own to climb back to within three of the visiting Statesmen. Following the emotionally charged start to an intense rivalry game, both teams settled in and used defense over the final 10 minutes of the first half to get to a 28-24 Richard Bland halftime lead. Armoni Lee scored 13 of his team high 21 points in the first half to carry the Canes to the intermission.
Coming out of the locker room at the half, the teams traded buckets before Lewis Freeman (19 points) caught fire and used one of his six threes (on eight attempts) to help guide the Canes to their first lead of the game at the 13:19 mark of the 2nd half. Over the next five minutes of clock, the Statesmen and Hurricanes went bucket for bucket until an 8-2 run, charged by Freeman's hot shooting from deep, gave the Canes the lead they would never surrender.
"That was an unbelievable 2nd half by Lewis Freeman," said Neil Dixon. "He's been in a little bit of a funk, but he got us back in the game tonight. And then got us up."
Richard Bland was able to close the gap to 60-58, but the Hurricanes used a 9-0 spurt, capped off by a Jordan Oakley (15 points) fast break layup, to take a 69-58 lead and force a Richard Bland timeout with 4:42 to play. From there, Louisburg survived a subpar shooting effort from the charity stripe to hang on and win 75-69.
"That was the best 40 minutes of defense we've played all year," Dixon continued. "Richard Bland is one of the top teams in the country and our guys played the scouting report perfectly."
"I can't say enough about our students and student-athletes tonight. They were outstanding. One of the best things about Louisburg is the comradeship between all the different sports teams on campus. They were the difference in the game tonight."
Next up for Louisburg is a Saturday afternoon date with Patrick Henry on the road at 3pm.