LEBANON, Tenn. – Lamar Brinkley scored 11 points and Daniel McFadden added 10 off the bench, as Cumberland overcame bad shooting and a sluggish effort overall, defeating Blue Mountain College, 61-48, in men’s basketball action Thursday night at the Dallas Floyd Recreation Center.
The Bulldogs (11-3, 3-0 TranSouth) remained perfect at home this season, improving to 7-0 at the DFRC, but it was perhaps the teams most uninspired effort of the year. Cumberland shot just 36 percent from the field and 11-for-20 at the foul line.
CU did limit the Toppers (7-8, 0-3) to just 35 percent shooting from the field and 3-of-15 from behind the arc as well as forcing 15 turnovers, but the Bulldogs could never put away BMC, which closed within seven points three times in the second half. Tyler Shaver’s jumper with 3:14 remaining cut the Cumberland lead to 50-43, but Johnny Williams answered with a basket and Adam Barnett added a 3-pointer for the Bulldogs to push the advantage back to 12.
Brinkley also led CU with eight rebounds while Terry Williams posted a career-best six blocks, five in the first half. Cumberland played almost the entire game without leading scorer Michael Sweat, who was a bit under the weather and logged just four minutes in the contest.
Shaver, Jarvis Fisher and DeVante Pulliam led the Toppers with nine points apiece.
The Bulldogs used a 14-3 run late in the first half to break a tie contest. A jumper from Charles Stewart at the 6:55 mark started the spurt that included a 3-pointer by Jerret Towns and five points Brinkley, including an old-fashioned 3-point play with 48 seconds left in the period. CU took a 30-22 advantage at the break.
Cumberland takes on long-time rival Trevecca Nazarene in Nashville on Saturday at 4 p.m. and travels to McKenzie to face Bethel University on Monday at 8 p.m.