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Hot Shooting Birmingham Southern Downs Scots 87-67

Chris Boyd (photo credit: Anna Dove/Sports Information)
Chris Boyd (photo credit: Anna Dove/Sports Information)

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- Colton McGriff and Chris Boyd combined for 34 points, but the Covenant men's basketball team was undone by a hot-shooting Birmingham Southern team as the Scots dropped an 87-67 decision on Saturday night.

The host Panthers shot 62.2 percent (28-of-45) from the field and nailed 13 3-pointers in the victory. Larry Thomas led five Birmingham Southern players in double figures with 26 points on 10-of-14 shooting, including six 3s.

McGriff posted a season-high 18 points, 15 of which came in the second half, while Boyd tallied a career-high 16 points to go with a career-best five assists and three steals. TJ Cox added nine points and four assists on the night.

After a tough first half offensively for Covenant, the Scots picked it up in the second period. In the second half alone, Covenant shot 53.6 percent (15-of-28) from the floor and had 10 assists while scoring 47 points. However, the deficit was too large for the Scots to makeup as they would not be able to chip away at the Panthers' lead. 

Birmingham Southern, who remains perfect at 4-0, led 44-20 at halftime thanks in large part to a 17-0 scoring run in the first half. With the score tied at 5-5, Covenant would go scoreless for over seven minutes and the Panthers took advantage as they raced out to a 22-5 lead.

Covenant cut its deficit to 17 at 53-36 after a conventional three-point play from McGriff with 15:17 remaining in the game, but that was as close as the Scots would get.

The Scots tallied 16 assists on 24 made field goals and accumulated 11 steals. Covenant was also 16-for-17 from the free throw line and connected on 46.2 percent (24-of-52) from the field overall.

Alex Avery added 12 points for the Panthers who also received 10 points apiece from Ross Welch, James McLean and Mac Barron.

Covenant will take its 1-2 record into Tuesday night's home opener against Oglethorpe. Tip-off at Barnes PE Center is set for 5:30 p.m.

Be sure to follow the Scots all season long on athletics.covenant.edu and on social media at FacebookTwitter and Instagram for up-to-date scores, news and other information.