Brevard, N.C. - The Tornados came into Thursday night’s game against Belmont Abbey looking for revenge after their season-opening 83-81 loss. Led by Josh Roper’s 21 points, Brevard came back from a 21-point second half deficit to bring the game within single digits, but Crusaders’ Richard Barbee’s 30 points were too much to overcome as Brevard fell in Boshamer Gymnasium, 85-75.
Jacques Dovonou scored in double-figures for Brevard (5-2, 1-0 SAC) with 15 points, going four of five from the field and seven of eight from the free throw line, while Jonathan Whitson and Sam Carlisle each had nine points. Darin Dellinger had seven points and seven assists while leading the Tornados offense which connected on 47.2 percent (25-53) of their attempts on the evening.
Kyle Phillips had 13 points and Andre Fells added 10 as Belmont Abbey (4-3, 1-1 CC) completes the season sweep of the Tornados. Barbee added seven assists to his 30 point effort and Phillips led the team with six rebounds and two blocked shots.
The Tornados scored the opening points of the game as Roper was fouled on a drive by Phillips and connected on a pair of free throws. Belmont Abbey responded with a 20-7 run which spanned 7:45 of the first half as Barbee score five and Phillips added four to put the score at 20-9 with 11:15 left in the opening period. Brevard brought the game back within single digits at 30-21 with 5:39 on the clock after a three-pointer by Drew Schauss, but the Crusaders again went on a run, closing out the half with a 50-31 lead as the teams headed into the locker rooms.
Barbee led all scorers with 16 points and seven assists at the break as the Tornados, despite connecting on 46.2 percent of their shots were undone in the turnover battle, coughing up the ball 11 times to the Crusaders three.
In the second half the Tornados battled back behind the play of Roper and Dovonou as the duo combined for 26 of Brevard’s 44 second half points as the Tornados twice brought the game back within 11 points through their full-court pressure, but clutch free throws down the stretch by Barbee gave the game to the visitors, 85-75.
Brevard is back in action on Tuesday, January 29th, as the Tornados head north to Oakland City, Ind. to take on Oakland City College. Tipoff between the Tornados and the Mighty Oaks is set for 7 p.m.