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Bison Pull Away for 71-54 Win Over Lafayette

Jan. 21, 2005

Box Score

LEWISBURG, Pa. ( - Lafayette twice cut Bucknell's lead to five early in the second half, but the Bison rattled off a 14-3 run and maintained a double figure lead the rest of the way to remain perfect in Patriot League men's basketball action with a 71-54 victory on Friday night.

Andrei Capusan finished off a three-point play to bring the Leopards (5-12, 1-3) within 35-30 with 15:51 remaining, and Matt Betley got an offensive rebound and putback after a Bucknell basket. Then Charles Lee started the stretch with a three, and Chris McNaughton scored the last four points to give Bucknell (13-4, 4-0) a 51-35 advantage with 7:45 left.

The first half was a grind-it-out halfcourt game, with both teams struggling to find their rhythm. After Bilal Abdullah hit a three-pointer at 13:29 to tie the score at 9 all, the Bison scored the next six points. Jamaal Douglas got three the old-fashioned way, and Capusan knocked down a shot to make the score 15-14.

McNaughton scored a pair of buckets to extend the margin to 23-14 before Marcus Harley and Jamaal Hilliard hit three's on either side of a McNaughton dunk to chip away at the lead. Lafayette held the Bison scoreless over the last 2:53, and a basket by Everest Schmidt with 29 seconds left sent the Leopards into the locker room facing a 29-22 deficit.

A bucket by Jamie Hughes a minute into the second half followed by a three from Harley sliced the Bison lead to 31-27. Capusan and Betley appeared to give Lafayette momentum, but Bucknell responded to put the game away.



Abdullah was the only Leopard in double figures, with 11 points, and also contributed four assists. Betley pulled down eight rebounds, five on the offensive end. Capusan had eight points and five boards.

McNaughton netted a game-high 17 points and had seven rebounds for Bucknell. Griffin finished with 11 and Lee scored 10.

Lafayette will travel through the night to Hamilton, N.Y. to prepare for Sunday's league match-up with Colgate. The tip will be at 1 p.m.