The Royals struggled to a 75-60 loss at reigning ODAC champion Emory & Henry Wednesday night. EMU's basketball men settle at 4-4 overall and 1-2 in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference.
Eastern Mennonite steps out of ODAC play for the remainder of the calendar year, starting with a game Saturday at Southern Virginia. Game time in Buena Vista, Va., is 3:00pm.
Both teams were cold in the first half before picking up the pace in the second.
Michael Williams (Richmond, Va./Varina) gave EMU an 8-3 lead with layup at the 13:54 mark. The Royals still led 20-15 after a three pointer from Travis Clower (Romney, W.V./Hampshire) with 9:49 on the clock. But the men scored just five points the remainder of the half, as Emory & Henry ended on an 18-5 push, going up 33-25 at intermission.
The teams combined to shoot just 38% (21-55) over the first 20 minutes.
That changed quickly in the second.
The Wasps came out firing and ballooned the lead to 46-31 after back-to-back three pointers just 3:25 into the half. Eastern Mennonite clamped on the defense to trigger a 7-0 run, but 46-38 would be the last time they had the margin down to single digits.
Despite hitting 16-of-31 shots in the half, the Royals couldn't overcome 10 turnovers, accentuated by EHC's mere two miscues in the period.
Clower made half of his shots en route to a team high 16 points and six rebounds. Sammy Thomas (Owings, Md./Northern) added 13 counters with another six boards. Tim Jones (Forestville, Md./Central) was good for 12 points, three assist and two steals.
Alic Wynn was unstoppable for the Wasps, exploding for 21 points and 18 rebounds. Jarris Hendricks dumped in 17, while Daniel Spencer hit four triples on his way to 14 points and seven boards.
EMU out-shot Emory & Henry 46% to 42%, but had a -10 turnover margin and made only 7-of-24 free throw attempts.