February 24, 2011

Panthers fall to New Orleans in regular season finale

NEW ORLEANS—Playing without seniors Patrick Price and Mark Messenger, the Birmingham-Southern men's basketball team lost on the road, Thursday, to New Orleans, 88-59, at Lakefront Arena.

The Privateers move to 15-5, while the Panthers fall to 21-4.

Freshman Griffin Schamp led BSC with 17 points, while sophomore Zac Richards added 15 points and sophomore Kevin Kegarise scored 12. Richards and junior Jasen Jonus led the Panthers with five rebounds apiece, and sophomore Blaise White led with three assists.

Antonio Wertz scored 20 points to lead UNO, with three other players topping at least 14 points. K.C. Ross-Miller scored 16 points, and seniors Jaroslav Tyrna and Ryan Kinsley scored 15 and 14 points, respectively.

After BSC made a field goal with 14:50 left in the opening half to pull within two at 7-5, the Privateers went on an 18-2 run and grabbed a 25-7 advantage with 7:15 remaining until the break.

UNO led by as many as 22 points with 1:42 remaining before the half prior to an 8-0 run to enter the break by the Panthers. The Privateers carried a 39-25 advantage into the half as BSC shot 7 for 24 from the field over the first 20 minutes of the game.

The deficit for the visiting squad to overcome never dropped into the single digits.

BSC scored the first basket of the second half to get within 12 and would trim the deficit back to 12 a minute later. With Ross-Miller and Wertz scoring 13 and 12 points, respectively in the last 20 minutes of the game, UNO's lead would extend to a game-high 29 points on Brandon Canady's last second three-pointer.

The Panthers, who won the SCAC regular season title on Sunday with a win against Centre College, will wrap up the season next weekend at the NCAA Provisional Tournament, hosted by Franciscan University, Friday and Saturday, March 4 and 5, in Steubenville, Ohio. Berry College, Covenant College, Franciscan University, and BSC are the four teams participating.