In front of 1300 fans last Wednesday night in Yoder Arena, Senior RJ Sims took over the basketball game against rival Bridgewater College to pull out the win.
Sims led the men’s basketball team with 16 points, but contributed most of them when it mattered. Over the last seven minutes of the game, he hit two clutch three pointers from the corner and knocked down big free throws, scoring 14 points.
The Royals’ leading scorer, Junior David Falk, was limited by foul trouble early, but still contributed eight rebounds. With Falk on the sideline, Junior Trey Barrett was asked to play big minutes in the post. Though his performance did not show in the box score, Barrett gave the Royals a huge lift by playing defense on Bridgewater’s Ed Reddick and contributing a well-timed block.
“I knew when [Coach Dean] put me in I had to just go in and play with confidence. We had a game plan for Reddick and knew he would ball fake a lot so I didn’t want to be caught by that,” said Barrett.
Juniors Marcel Crump and James Williams also had 14 points as the Royals out shot Bridgewater from the floor and the free throw line.
The packed Yoder Arena came to life during the final minutes of the game due to the energy and intensity brought by Sims.
The Royals improved to 2-3 in conference play and 7-7 overall at the time before pushing that mark up to 3-3 and 8-7 with a win against Emory and Henry on Saturday.
The men return home to Yoder Arena on Saturday night in a match-up with Guilford.
-Adam Posey, Staff Writer; photos by Randell Smith and Wayne Gehman (provided by Marketing)