NASHVILLE, TENN. – In its first home game in more than three weeks, the Lipscomb men's basketball team used the one-two punch of Rob Marberry and Ahsan Asadullah to take a 107-81 win over Navy on Sunday afternoon at Allen Arena.
The duo combined for 50 points and 12 rebounds in leading the Bisons to a 54-22 advantage in the paint and 29-25 on the boards.
"It's always supposed to be our emphasis, but Rob and Ahsan had good early success and built confidence," Lipscomb head coach Casey Alexander said. "Anytime you get 50 points on 24 attempts from those two, that's pretty efficient."
Five nights after scoring a season high 26 points in the loss at Belmont, Marberry repeated his performance against the Midshipmen to lead all scorers in only 19 minutes of action. The senior finished 10-14 from the floor and 6-8 from the free throw line.
In 21 minutes off the bench, Asadullah had his way with Navy. He scored 24 points, just two off his career high, on a perfect 10-10 shooting and grabbed a game-high eight rebounds.
It took a few minutes for the Bisons (7-2) to get going on offense, scoring only two points in the first four minutes. After Navy drained a three at 15:39 in the first half to go up seven, the Bisons responded with a 14-4 spurt over the next four minutes.
"I didn't think we had very good energy in the first half, we scored a lot of points, but we didn't play with enough purpose, espcially on the defensive end" Alexander said. "All-in-all however, it's hard to complain about a 26-point win."
Junior Andrew Flemming jumpstarted the run with five points on back-to-back possessions and the Bisons never looked back. Lipscomb built a 10-point lead three times and shot 62% from the field to go into the locker room up 52-45.
Marberry set the tone early in the second half with seven straight points, despite a pair of long balls from Navy to stay within an arms reach of the Bisons. Over the next eight minutes, four different players scored for Lipscomb to spark a 25-7 run for the Purple and Gold to take an 84-60 lead.
Freshman Jake Wolfe recorded a career high eight points in the win, but none was more exciting than his acrobatic layup with 1:05 to play to give the Bisons their biggest lead of the afternoon at 28.
Lipscomb's ball movement was precise in the win, resulting in a season high 25 assists to just nine turnovers. On the opposite end, the Bisons defense forced 15 Midshipmen miscues and scored 31 points off those them.
- The 107 points are the most in a game for the Bisons since scoring 108 at FGCU in last season's ASUN Championship game.
- Lipscomb shot a season high 64.4% from the floor after hitting 38-of-59 field goal attempts. They shot 62% in the first half and 67% in the second.
- The 55-point second half was the most points the Bisons have scored in a half this season. Their 52 first-half points were the third most.
- Nate Moran added 14 points behind four 3-pointers, and Kenny Cooper chipped in 10 to give Lipscomb four players in double figures.
- Cooper collected a game high five assists in 16 minutes.
- Marks the eight time in his career that Marberry has scored at least 25 points in a game.
- Asadullah did most of his work in the second half with 16 points and six boards.
- Navy was led by John Carter Jr. – A Spring Hill, Tennessee native – who had 17 points.
- The Midshipmen shot 97% from the free throw line, draining 28-29. Lipscomb hit 81% at 21-26.
- The Bisons shot 10-21 from long distance. It's the second most long balls of the season after hitting 12 at Morehead State.
- Lipscomb outscored Navy 58-26 off the bench.
- 12 different players scored for the Bisons.
- Wolfe and Garrison Mathews each recorded four assists.
Lipscomb hits the road again on Wednesday for a quick trip to the Bluegrass State when the Bisons take on the Louisville Cardinals at 6 p.m. in the KFC YUM! Center.
"We are right in the middle of exams, so it's a tough time for the guys and I am asking a lot out of them," Alexander said. "Louisville will be our greatest challenge to date. They are extremely solid on both ends of the court and we will have to work for everything we get.
"At the very least we are going to learn a lot about ourselves, so I hope we get better."