Scots Pull Away in Second Half for 83-69 win at Brevard

Bailey Spragg (Nina Grauley/ Sports Information)
Bailey Spragg (Nina Grauley/ Sports Information)

BREVARD, N.C. -- Four players scored in double figures, led by Patjo Twagirayezu and Berto Dryden with 17 each, and the Covenant men's basketball team pulled away in the second half for an 83-69 win at Brevard on Saturday afternoon.

The win snaps a brief, two-game skid for Covenant (4-3) and also gives the Scots their first road win of the year. Brevard, a reclassifying member of NCAA Division III and the USA South, drops to 1-5 on the year.

Covenant led by two at the intermission, 42-40, but methodically took the game over in the second half. Dryden scored 12 of his 17 points in the second half, while Twagirayezu had 11 of his 17 in the period. The Scots shot 48.1 percent in the half, but made 13-of-14 at the free throw line and limited Brevard to just 30.8 percent from the field.

Brevard knotted the score at 42-42 early in the second, but the Scots scored the next six, capped by four straight points from Caleb Haynes, to go ahead 48-42 with 17:10 remaining. Covenant led by three, 55-52, with just over 11 minutes left before outscoring the host Tornados 14-5 over the next four-plus minutes to go ahead 69-57 with 6:38 left. Twagirayezu scored the final four points of the scoring spurt and his layup with 6:38 left gave the Scots their largest lead of the game at that point.

The lead would extend to 16 later in the half after a Dryden free throw before Covenant was able to seal the win.

Twagirayezu and Dryden led the way offensively as both scored 17 points and collected six rebounds apiece. Twagirayezu also had three assists. Bailey Spragg poured in 12 points and dished out a game-best four assists to go along with game-high seven steals. Haynes was also in double-figure scoring as he tallied 13 points and four rebounds with three steals. Will Crumly and James Mitchell each had nine points.

Covenant shot 49.1 percent (28-of-57) for the game and went 20-for-26 at the free throw line. The Scots also held a 35-29 rebounding edge and scored 25 points off 20 Brevard turnovers.

Covenant had to rally back in the first half to take the two-point lead into the break. Trailing 21-19, the Scots went on an 18-4 scoring run over a span of six-plus minutes. Twagirayezu had six points during the stretch and a Mitchell 3-pointer capped the run that gave Covenant a 37-25 lead with 3:23 left in the period. Brevard chipped away at the lead and got within two after JaMarquis Johnson's 3-pointer in the final seconds of the period.

Johnson led Brevard with 24 points off the bench and Stevie Williams added 16 points. Brevard connected on 41.2 percent (21-of-51) from the floor and was 19-of-23 at the stripe. 

UP NEXT

Covenant will head to Memphis, Tenn., for the Rhodes Holiday Classic on Dec. 18-19. The Scots face Austin College on Monday at 4 p.m. EST (3 p.m. CST).

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