The Westminster men’s basketball team slipped to Greenville on Saturday afternoon, 73-62. The Westminster Blue Jays are now 1-5 on the season and 0-2 in conference play.
The Greenville Panthers took a 13-0 run to start the game throughout the first six minutes of the game. Senior Verdis Lee Jr. put the first points on the board with a bucket and a made free throw, but the Panthers scored four more points before the Blue Jays attacked the hoop again.
Lee Jr. and senior Brandon Moore owned the basket the rest of the half, scoring 9 and 13 points, respectively. Freshman Tanner Cochran hit two from the foul line to give the Blue Jays the 29-27 advantage heading into halftime.
Junior Matt Murphy hit the first two shots of the second half for the Blue Jays. A three-pointer by sophomore Tanner Gentges brought the Blue Jays up 36-35, but the Panthers knocked down 12 unanswered points to take the 47-36 lead. Two free throws by Lee Jr. brought the Blue Jays within six with 12:21 left in the game. The Panthers extended their lead, but a three-pointer by junior Brandon Drum put the game within five, 53-48.
Cochran sunk two from the foul line to put the Blue Jays down by just three points, but the Panthers answered with seven points of their own. The Panthers pulled their lead to over 10 points. Two free throws, a three-pointer and a jump shot by Lee Jr. put the Blue Jays under 10, but the Blue Jays were out of time; the Blue Jays fell 73-62.
Lee Jr. led the Blue Jays with 21 points. He went 7-7 from the foul line and pulled down five rebounds. Moore added 19 points while going 5-8 from beyond the arc. Junior Jordan Jensen pulled down five boards.
The Blue Jays host Central College (Iowa) on Tuesday, December 9 at 7:00 p.m. Last year’s SLIAC All-Conference award winners, Moore and Lee Jr., will be recognized at 6:50 p.m.