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Women's Basketball Debuts in the Polls as the Men Drop their First

The Bryant & Stratton College women’s basketball team vaulted into the NJCAA DII National Rankings for the first time this season, grabbing the 17th spot in the most recent poll.

Their place in the rankings is due in part to their back-to-back wins over Central Carolina Community College and Guilford Tech. BSC found their stifling defense and potent offense once again after their only loss of the year so far, a 75-50 defeat at the hands of ASA College.

BSC didn’t wait to put CCCC away as the Bobcats rolled up a 42-18 lead at the end of the first half alone. Breona Cowan was an unstoppable force through the entire game, leading all players with 29 points and adding 10 rebounds to the effort. Gabrielle Swinson and Khala Dowling were each pivotal compliments to Cowan as they picked up 13 and 14 points, respectively.

Swinson and Cowan were just as involved in BSC’s dominating 86-40 win over Guilford Tech, tying for the game lead with 19 points each. The Bobcats capitalized on 34 Guilford turnovers to run away with the game early on. The Bobcats put up 20 points in every quarter but the fourth while holding their opponents to no more than 15 points in any one period. Even after a tight first quarter, the Bobcats were ready to run and run they did. BSC pulled away in the second quarter as they outscored Guilford 28-10 in the frame. Sunday’s game against Southside Community College had to be cancelled but the Bobcats will be back at it on Saturday when they faceoff with conference foe Louisburg College as part of the Virginia Beach and Hampton homecoming celebration.

Tip-off for Saturday is at 1:00pm as the Bobcats hope to climb the NJCAA rankings.

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The Bryant & Stratton College men suffered their first defeat of the season in the final game of the Pitt Classic at Pitt Community College over the weekend.

After taking their first two games in convincing fashion, the Bobcats were toppled by Southside Community College by a score of 83-73 on Sunday. The tournament started out well for BSC as they rolled past Stillwater Prep 98-50 with yet another balanced effort from the starting five and players off the bench. Trevon Wiggins led all Bobcats with 16 points while Romello Anderson, Greg Heckstall and Jaleel Ferguson each hit double digits.

BSC owned the boards yet again, claiming 54 total rebounds on the day and limiting Stillwater’s second-chance opportunities were few and far between as Brian Graves continued to roll through his lineup using a platoon-like system that keeps fresh legs on the floor. Saturday’s contest was a much tighter affair, with BSC squeezing out a 74-66 win that saw them hold off a second half rally from Believe Prep. Anderson again was pivotal for the Bobcats, putting down 16 points in just over 22 minutes of action off the bench.

Only Heckstall managed to hit double digits (10 points) as the Bobcats struggled from the field, only shooting 37.5% and a lowly 27.3% from beyond the arc. Heckstall managed a double-double, however, as he pulled down 10 rebounds to go with another 10 from Shyheim Draughan for the national leaders in rebounding margin. BSC’s continued dominance on the boards went a long way towards their 8-0 start and despite grabbing 41 on Sunday against Southside; the streak came to an end.

The Bobcats staked themselves to a 10-point lead at the end of the first half and appeared to be well on their way to another strong showing. However, Southside exploded for 54 second-half points and ran away from BSC with an 83-73 win. As has been the norm this season, Heckstall led the Bobcats in scoring and rebounding (12 and 11) although the support off the bench wasn’t there for BSC. In fact, the starting five saw their most time over the entire season with four of the five playing well over 20 minutes on the afternoon. Shooting was likely the culprit that snapped the streak in the end, however.

BSC only mustered 39.1% from the field and only hit 4-of-15 three point attempts. The loss is just a drop in the bucket for the eighth-ranked Bobcats as they will see a pair of conference opponents this weekend as Patrick Henry Community College comes to town for homecoming before giving way to Pitt Community College on Sunday afternoon. Saturday’s game tips at 3:00PM as does Sunday’s contest.


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