BANNER ELK, N.C. --- Daniel Sepokas (Illawong, Australia) scored 13 of his game-high 20 points in the second half to lead the Lees-McRae College men's basketball team to a 64-56 win over Erskine College on Thursday night in Conference Carolinas play.
Lees-McRae (6-14, 2-10 CC) shot 49 percent from the field on the night, including a blistering 57.1 percent (12-of-21) in the second half, while holding Erskine (2-17, 1-11 CC) to a 43.5 percent clip overall. The Flying Fleet edged the Bobcats by a 32-30 margin on the glass, including a 20-17 advantage on the defensive boards, as Lees-McRae converted 19 miscues into 25 points.
Sepokas knocked down 7-of-9 attempts from the floor, including a 2-for-4 clip from beyond the arc, en route to his game-high total of 20 points. Adam McFerran (Stow, Ohio) and Gerry Hairston (Winston-Salem, N.C.) joined Sepokas in double figures with 14 and 11 points, respectively, as Sepokas dished out a game-high four assists.
DeShaun Hall (Inman, S.C.) paced the Flying Fleet with 15 points on 5-of-9 shooting while Casey Sorrell (Walton, Ky.) added 14 points of his own. Chris Gore (Myrtle Beach, S.C.) posted a game-high 12 rebounds for Erskine, while Adison Lawrence (Greer, S.C.) added nine boards and a squad-best three assists.
Lees-McRae opened the game on an 8-3 run before Erskine responded, evening the score at 8-8 with a 5-0 spurt that was capped by a Brandon Quarles (Landrum, S.C.) layup with 14:01 left in the half. Neither team opened a lead of more than six points for the remainder of the period, with Lees-McRae closing out the half on a 7-0 spurt to take a 29-24 lead into the intermission following a last-second dunk by Tevin Friday (Gastonia, N.C.).
Erskine would stay within striking distance early in the second half, tying the score at 35-35 on a Lawrence layup before Lees-McRae responded, launching a 10-2 run to take a 45-37 lead on a Friday layup with 11:07 to play. The Flying Fleet answered once again, responding with a 12-3 run to take a 49-48 advantage on a triple by Filip Pejovic (Prijepolje, Serbia) with 6:04 left in the contest.
Lees-McRae refused to back down, countering with a 4-0 spurt to reclaim the lead at 52-49 following a steal and athletic reverse over-the-head pass by Sepokas, which set up an uncontested fast break layup by Hairston. The Bobcats continued to dictate the tempo over the next four minutes, pushing the margin to 61-52 on a triple by Sepokas with 59 ticks left to put the game out of reach.
Lees-McRae returns to the hardwood on Saturday when the Bobcats travel to Laurinburg, N.C. to take on St. Andrews Presbyterian College to continue their conference slate with a 4 p.m. matchup. The Knights won the teams' first meeting on Jan. 15 with a 102-97 overtime victory.
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