BIRMINGHAM, Ala.—The Birmingham-Southern men's basketball team got back to its winning ways Friday evening with an 88-62 victory against Berry College in Bill Battle Coliseum.
The Panthers move to 13-4 overall and 6-1 in the Southern Athletic Association; the Vikings fall to 4-13 overall and 1-6 in the league.
The teams played to five ties with four lead changes in the opening eight minutes, culminating in an 11-11 tie at the 12:28 mark, after which the Panthers pulled ahead for good. BSC led by as much as 10, twice, but Berry fought back, cutting the lead to one, 27-26, at the 3:15 mark, after which the Panthers responded with a 12-0 run to pull ahead by 13. BSC expanded its lead to 15, 43-28, before taking a 43-30 lead into the locker room at halftime.
BSC kept a comfortable double-digit lead for the duration of the second half, leading by as much as 26 at both the 7:39 mark and at the final buzzer.
Sophomore Larry Thomas led the Panthers with 14 points, shooting 6-8, followed by freshman Ross Welch with 13 on 6-10 shooting, senior Zac Richards with 12 points on perfect 5-5 shooting, and senior Kevin Kegarise, also with 12 points. Rebounding was balanced, with junior Schylar Freeman leading with five of the team's 36 boards. Senior Blaise White led all players with five assists and five steals.
Mac Whalen led Berry with 13 points, followed by Lake Graham with 11 and Jonathan Abrams with 10.
BSC shot 35-69 (.507) from the field and 7-23 (.304) from the three-point line, and was 11-15 (.733) on free throws. The Vikings were 20-42 (.476) from the field, 4-11 (.364) from beyond the arc, and 18-26 (.692) from the line.
The Panthers led on the boards, 36-27, while committing 17 turnovers to the Vikings' 32.
BSC is at home again this Sunday to face Oglethorpe at 3 p.m. in Bill Battle Coliseum.