January 2, 2007

Panthers Claw Bobcats

The Lees-McRae College Bobcats opened 2007 season on the road, falling 88-62 to High Point University Panthers in non-conference action. The loss drops the Bobcats record to 3-5 this season, while the Panthers improve to 9-5.

The home side scored eight of the first 10 points of the game and built an 18-10 lead on a three-pointer by Troy Bowen with 12:49 left to play in the first half. The Panthers led by as much as nine points in the opening stanza, but a 12-2 surge by the Bobcats tied the game at 27 at the 6:15 mark. The Bobcats managed to keep pace with their Division I opponents for several minutes before High Point closed the half on a 9-0 run over the final 2:31 to own a 45-33 halftime advantage.

A five-point surge early in the second half pushed the Panthers to a 17-point lead, but the Bobcats clawed back to close to within 10 points (60-50) with 10:26 left to play. The Panthers answered with a 22-6 spurt over the next six minutes to take full control of the contest.

Arizona Reid paced HPU with a game high 26 points, while Troy Bowen chipped in 18. Jerald Minnis scored a double double for the home side with 13 points and 13 rebounds.

Henry Williams, (pictured top left), led the Bobcats with 15 points while Aaron Dugger contributed 10. DJ Menifee contributed 9 points, 3 assists and a pair of steals out of the Bobcats back court.

The Bobcats were in tough from the get go, as the Panthers entered the game with an undefeated home record. The Panthers shot 57 percent from the floor (35-61) for the game and handed out 21 assists. The two squads both pulled down 34 rebounds in the contest with Lees-McRae pulling down 16 offensive boards. The Bobcats shot 50 percent in the first half, but HPU turned things up on the defensive end holding LMC to just 25 percent in the second half.

The Bobcats will return to Carolinas-Virginia Athletic Conference action next Monday January 8th when they travel to Belmont Abbey College. Tip off is set for 7:30pm.