LYNCHBURG, VA.- Coming off a near comeback against Lynchburg on Wednesday, the Randolph men's basketball team hosted Bridgewater on Saturday afternoon at the RAD Center. The WildCats led for most of the game as they took care of the Eagles 73-60.
The victory snaps the 'Cats five-game winless streak and improves their record to 5-16 overall and 2-10 in the ODAC. The Eagles are 12-9 overall and 6-6 in the conference. Randolph has now won nine of the last 10 games in the series between the two teams.
Sammy Hooper (Richmond, Va./Midlothian) got the scoring started for the WildCats with a three-point shot just 14 seconds in. The Eagles took their only lead of the day, 4-3, at 18:09. It was all Randolph from that point on as it never trailed again.
The 'Cats lead stood at 19-17 with 9:09 to play in the half. An 18-6 Randolph run gave the home team a 37-23 lead at the break.
Randolph continued to pour it on in in the second half as it expanded its advantage to 44-26 at 17:35. Bridgewater chipped away with a quick run to get to 46-36 with 14:03 remaining. The WildCats piled on with a 10-0 run to lead by 20 points at 12:07.
It was not easy for Randolph as the Eagles made it interesting late in the game. The WildCat lead was down to nine points, 64-55, with just under three minutes to play in the contest. It was 68-58 with a little over two minutes left following a three from Bridgewater's Chandler Murray. That would be as close as the Eagles could get as the WildCats edged them 5-2 down the stretch.
Ryan Fields (Edgewood, Md./Loyola Blakesfield) had a solid game as he put down 24 points on 9-of-15 shooting. He also had five rebounds and three assists. Hooper added 18 points, seven rebounds, and four assists. Brian Smith (Dumfries, Va./C.D. Hylton) nearly had a double-double with 11 points and nine rebounds while also dishing out four assists.
As a team, Randolph shot 26-of-53 (49.1%) from the floor and 7-of-19 (36.8%) from beyond the three-point arc. The WildCats were good on 14-of-17 free throws (82.4%). The 'Cats controlled the boards 36-26 and its10 turnovers committed represented a season-low.
The WildCats will next play Hampden-Sydney on the road this coming Wednesday. Game time is at 7:00 p.m.