Career Night From Mike Green Not Enough As CNU Falls to NC Wesleyan, 90-86
ROCKY MOUNT, N.C. -- In his final trip to Rocky Mount, senior Mike Green (Norfolk, Va.) showed up and posted a career night, leading the Captains with new career-high's in scoring and rebounding, with 33 points and 13 rebounds. His efforts, though, would not be enough, as the North Carolina Wesleyan Battling Bishops (10-5, 2-0) squeaked out a 90-86 victory over visiting CNU (8-5, 1-1).
Both teams were incredibly effective from the field in the game, in what proved to be a shootout. The Captains led for most of the game, but never led by more than eight; the Bishops took the lead with 13:41 remaining, but also struggled to extend the lead, never leading by more than seven in the game.
Green was at the forefront of the Captains early lead, with junior Conley Taylor joining him. Taylor and Green were hot from the field, scoring 38 first half points combined, on 15-of-23 shooting. Green finished the first half with a double-double already, scoring 19 points and hauling in 10 rebounds. The Captains managed a four-point first half lead, 48-44, with both teams shooting over 48% from the field.
In the second half, the Captains looked to Green early, again, scoring the first four points as CNU posted their largest lead of the night, 54-46 with 17:48 remaining. Green and Taylor again combined for 12 of the first 14 CNU points in the half, including a layup from Taylor with 15:06 remaining to get the lead back to six, 62-56.
Matt Dougherty and the Bishops would answer, though, in a big way. On back-to-back possessions, Dougherty would lift the Bishops into their first lead in over 12 minutes of action. He first converted a traditional three-point play, and then, in a huge momentum shifting shot, knocked down a three-pointer while getting fouled, and converted the four-point play.
The Captains would lead again, briefly, at 74-72 with 9:03 remaining, but the Bishops would answer and not look back. Dougherty led the way, scoring a team-high 31 points for the Bishops, including knocking down five three-pointers, with three in the second half. NC Wesleyan would stretch the lead to seven as late as 48 seconds remaining, but the Captains would still not disappear.
Rookie Tra Benefield knocked down a huge three from the corner, followed by a fast break layup from Taylor to get CNU back within one possession. After a pair of made free-throws, sophomore guard Jake Capin also knocked down a big three to pull CNU back within two with eight seconds remaining. Alex Murray would seal the win, though, by knocking down both free-throws on the other end.
Green's career-best night would come in the loss, as he finished with 33 points on 13-of-21 shooting. He added a career-high 13 rebounds, with three blocks, a steal and a perfect 7-for-7 night from the charity stripe. Taylor added 29 for CNU and Capin finished with a season-high 9 points.
Dougherty's 31 were tops for the Bishops, and he was joined in double-figures by Alex Murray with 17 and Devin Nichols with 12.
The Captains return to action this Saturday, as they host Ferrum College in the Freeman Center at 4:00 pm.