Cumberland pounded at Mid-Continent
PADUCAH, Ky. – Cumberland University dropped an 86-59 decision to Mid-Continent University Monday night at Paducah Tilghman High School and may have cost itself a home game for the quarterfinal round of the TranSouth Championships in the process.
With its sixth loss in conference play, Cumberland (11-15, 9-6) will need to defeat MCU (17-11, 10-4) when the two teams meet on Saturday and need Blue Mountain to defeat the Cougars on Thursday to finish in a tie for fourth in the league. The top four seeds receive home games for the quarterfinals.
Mid-Continent killed the Bulldogs from behind the arc, going 12-of-19 (63 percent) from downtown. Joshua Woodley led all scorers with 21 points, with all seven of his converted shots coming from 3-point range.
Walter Simon scored 11 straight Cumberland points in the second half and finished with 17 to lead the Bulldogs. CU was well out of the contest at that point as the Cougars led by double digits the entire second half, going on top by as many 22 points.
Mid-Continent went into the locker room with a 13-point advantage after leading for all but 61 seconds of the first 20 minutes.
The Bulldogs’ only lead of the opening half came when Andrew Ayodeji drained a 3-pointer from the right corner to put CU up 20-18. However, the Cougars came right back down the court and tied the game 16 seconds later when Kenny Thomas made a basket and started a 16-2 run.
The next four points for MCU came off of turnovers as the Cougars quickly shifted the momentum of the contest. The Bulldogs turned the ball over 10 times in the opening half and 21 in the game.
One of the few highlights in the contest for Cumberland came in the first half when Brandon Springer swiped the ball from Aaron Pearson just beyond midcourt and went the distance, finishing with a dunk. The two points gave him eight on the night and 1,001 for his career.
The Nashville, Tenn., native entered the 1,000-point club against Bethel University last Monday, but a ruling by the NAIA later in the week CU’s two games against Hiwassee earlier in the year will not count toward Cumberland’s regular season record. Because the games are now considered exhibition contests, all statistics were erased, dropping Springer’s career point total to 955.
Springer finished with 14 points in the game. Lamar Brinkley pulled down a team-high 13 rebounds.
Cumberland faces the Cougars again on Saturday in Lebanon as the Bulldogs close out the regular season.