Sophomore guard Tucker Sine (Bowling Green, Ky.) tallied a team-high 24 points to lead the Centre men’s basketball team to a 66-61 victory over host Millsaps in a Southern Athletic Association (SAA) contest on Sunday afternoon at the Hangar Dome.
The Colonels boosted their records to 9-7 overall and 5-2 in SAA action while the Majors fall to 4-14 on the season and 1-6 in league play.
In the first half, Centre held an 11-7 advantage before using a 13-2 run capped by an old-fashioned 3-point play by freshman forward Jacob Bates (LaGrange, Ky.) to gain its largest lead of the afternoon at 24-9 with just under nine minutes to play in the period.
The Majors answered with a 10-0 surge to shrink the Colonels’ edge to 24-19, before Centre eventually gained a 37-31 advantage at the break.
In the second half of action, Centre took a 54-48 lead when freshman guard Bailey Rakes (Mt. Washington, Ky.) knocked down a 3-pointer at the 7:53 mark of the stanza, before Millsaps responded with an 11-4 spurt to take its first lead of the night at 59-58 with a Buck Blanz 3-pointer with 2:54 to play in the contest.
The Colonels would close the game on an 8-2 run, including four free throws by Sine to seal the 66-61 triumph for Centre.
Sine connected on 7-of-11 field goals, 2-of-5 shots from behind the arc and 8-of-8 free throws in the victory. Rakes chipped in eight points to go with six rebounds, while freshman guard Perry Ayers (Bowling Green, Ky.) had eight points and a team-high seven rebounds off the bench for the Colonels.
Blanz recorded a team-high 24 points off the bench for the Majors, shooting 11-of-21 from the field.
Sam Kohnke pulled down a game-high eight boards for Millsaps.
Centre shot 40.7 percent (22-of-54) from the field, 28.0 percent (7-of-25) from long range and a sizzling 93.8 percent (15-of-16) from the charity stripe.
The Colonels outrebounded the Majors 40-31 and outscored Millsaps 12-8 in second chance points, 26-20 in points in the paint and 10-2 in fastbreak points.
Centre returns to action on Friday night hosting Birmingham Southern in another SAA matchup at 8 p.m. ET at Alumni Gymnasium. The Colonels and Panthers are tied atop the SAA standings with 5-2 marks in conference action.
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by Liam P. Halferty