LEBANON, Tenn. – Three Cumberland University men’s basketball games in the last four games have ended the same way – with the Bulldogs taking a shot in the last few seconds with a chance to force overtime. After Saturday’s game against Campbellsville University at the Lindsey Wilson Classic in Columbia, Ky., the three games have now ended with similar outcomes – with Cumberland suffering a close loss, this time falling 60-58 to the Tigers.
Cumberland (2-4) lost at Talladega College and at Lindsey Wilson on Wednesday and Friday, respectively, when a last-second, game-tying 3-pointer wouldn’t fall. Against Campbellsville Lindal Yarbrough’s runner from just inside the arc was off the mark leaving the Tigers with a two-point win. The Bulldogs have lost their four games by a combined 10 points.
Trailing by a point to begin the second half, Cumberland took the 29-28 lead on a Lamar Brinkley layup. The Nashville native finished with 14 points and eight rebounds.
The Bulldogs held onto the lead until the 11:49 mark when Campbellsville regained the advantage with a pair of free throws. The Tigers would eventually push the lead out to five points before Cumberland kept Campbellsville off the board for more than four minutes.
During that stretch, the Bulldogs put up 10 points with four different players scoring, including Kyle Upton who scored the first and last baskets of the span.
The two teams swapped missed shots before Campbellsville’s Caleb Harris drove to the basket. Michael Sweat blocked the layup but was called for goaltending and a subsequent technical foul for slapping the backboard on the block. With both free throws good, Cumberland’s lead was cut to a single point.
Sweat made one free throw on the ensuing possession to make it a two-point Cumberland advantage. Campbellsville then took the lead and stretched it to three points on a bucket and a free throw after a Haris Batalevic foul.
Yarbrough, who ended the game with 14 points, forced the eighth and final tie of the game with a bucket in the paint and 1-of-2 free throws with 25 seconds left on the clock.
Campbellsville made the final basket of the game with 14 seconds left, but Cumberland was unable to respond.
Batalevic led the Bulldogs with 17 points, including five 3-pointers.
Cumberland returns to action next Tuesday when the Bulldogs travel to Auburn-Montgomery. AUM knocked the CU out of the NAIA National Championships two years ago.