KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Lincoln Memorial University men’s basketball team continues to move up in the national rankings, as the Railsplitters jumped one spot to No. 11 in this week’s NABC/Division II Men’s Basketball Poll. LMU is 6-0 on the season after swiping a pair of South Atlantic Conference victories at Tusculum and Newberry this past week.
The Railsplitters opened the past week of competition with a trip to Tusculum Wednesday evening, where they captured a commanding 83-70 win over the Pioneers in Greeneville, Tenn. LMU established a double-digit advantage by the 15:12 mark of the second half and never led by fewer than eight points from that juncture en route to victory. LMU boasted a balanced scoring attack with four players notching double-figure scoring, headlined by Cam Carden’s 17-point outburst.
Lincoln Memorial traveled to Newberry Sunday and found themselves in a dogfight with the Wolves. With 6:02 left on the game clock in the second half, the Railsplitters were facing a 12-point deficit but used some late-game heroics to lift their way to victory. Trailing by six with 1:47 to play, senior Wally Jones drilled a three to cut the deficit in half and Lorenza Ross knotted the game two possessions later with another three at the 38-second mark and the game went to overtime. In the OT, the two teams met at a 95-95 stalemate before Carden drained a 3-pointer with three seconds left to give LMU a 100-95 win on the road.
The Railsplitters are shooting at a highly-efficient 51.1-percent clip from the field and 43-percent from the three, while limiting their foes to only 38-percent from the floor and 24-percent from the three-point arc. The ‘Splitters are outscoring their opponents by an average margin of 25.7 this season, while also outrebounding the competition by 11.5 boards per game.
Five players are currently averaging double-figure scoring for the Railsplitters this season, led by senior Jake Troyli’s 15.5 points per contest. The forward hailing from Largo, Fla., has also reigned in 4.7 boards per game and ranks second on the team with an average of 29.3 minutes played per game. The Railsplitters’ front court has been bolstered by the return of preseason All-SAC First Team selection Vincent Bailey, as he is holding an average of 10 points and 6.7 rebounds per game.
Senior Wally Jones is playing the best basketball of his career this season, scoring 13.2 points and grabbing four rebounds per game for the Railsplitters. He leads the team in three-point shooting with 15 makes in 32 attempts. Ross ranks third on the team in scoring at 12.2 per contest and is tied with Carden for the team lead in assists with 19. Carden has recorded 10.2 points per game with 10 made three-pointers to his credit.
Senior Dustin Craig is leading the Railsplitters in rebounding with 7.2 per game to go along with a scoring average of 7.5 per.
The Railsplitters will be back in action on Saturday as they travel to the University of Virginia-Wise for a nonconference matchup set to tip 4 p.m.