HPU men’s basketball guts out a 61-58 road win at Radford

• High Point picked up its second-straight road win and its third-straight win overall with a 61-58 victory at Radford Saturday.
• Redshirt-senior Miles Bowman Jr., notched his ninth double-double of the season with a career-high 24 points and 11 rebounds.
• The Panthers outrebounded the top rebounding team in the Big South, 41-30, and had 16 offensive rebounds in the win.

RADFORD, Va. – The High Point University men’s basketball team won a nail biter on the road at Radford, 61-58, on Saturday afternoon at the Dedmon Center in Radford, Va. Redshirt-senior Miles Bowman Jr., led all scorers with a career-high 24 points, including two big free throws in the closing seconds.

HPU led by just one with nine seconds remaining when sophomore Andre Fox missed the front end of a one-and-one. Bowman Jr., outmuscled two Radford players to grab the offensive board and was then fouled. The forward stepped to the line and calmly drilled both free throws to put the Purple & White up by three. Radford got a contested shot off before the buzzer but it hit off the rim as High Point held on for its third-straight win.

Bowman Jr. finished with 24 points and 11 rebounds for his ninth double-double of the season. The forward went 9-14 overall and 2-3 from behind the arc and scored 15 of his career-high 24 points in the second half. Sophomore Andre Fox was the only other HPU player in double figures with 11 points to go along with five rebounds and a career-high matching five assists.

High Point did a fantastic job on the boards once again, outrebounding the top rebounding team in the Big South, 41-30, with 16 offensive rebounds that led to 12 second-chance points. In addition to Bowman Jr.’s 11 rebounds, sophomore Ricky Madison grabbed eight boards and senior Tarique Thompson had six.

Radford had four players in double figures for the game led by Christian Lutete’s 12 off the bench. Ed Polite Jr., Donald Hicks and Darius Bolstad all finished with 10 points.

“The guys were resilient today, they never stopped fighting,” head coach Scott Cherry said. “Miles Bowman Jr., was a warrior today. To come out and play like that after the amount of minutes he played on Thursday, he was tremendous. We did a great job on the backboards in the game. We had 16 offensive rebounds and they only had nine. These guys took a lot of pride coming into today at being good rebounding the ball. This was a grind it out game and we really gutted it out.”

The Panthers improve to 10-10 overall and 4-4 in the Big South with the win, HPU’s third conference road win of the season. Radford drops to 9-11 overall and 4-4 in the conference.

Neither team had much success on the offensive end of the floor to start the game and midway through the first half the Panthers trailed by three, 12-9. Bowman Jr., propelled HPU back into the lead with a layup and two free throws, kick starting an 11-2 run by the Purple & Black. The forward had seven of High Point’s 11 points as the Panthers went up by six, 20-14, with six minutes left in the half.

Radford cut the High Point lead down to just two on a 3-pointer by Justin Cousin with 13 seconds remaining in the period, but the Panthers raced down the floor and freshman Jamal Wright found junior Austin White who buried a shot from behind the arc at the buzzer. The 3-pointer sent the Purple & White into the locker room up five, 27-22.

The Panthers led by seven, 33-26, with 15 minutes left when Lutete hit a 3-pointer to spur a 9-0 run by the Highlanders. Lutete scored seven of RU’s nine points, including the final bucket of the run that put Radford in front, 35-33, with 12 minutes to play.

The lead changed hands 11 times over the next eight minutes with neither side able to build an advantage larger than three. The Purple & White claimed the lead for good on a Bowman Jr., three with 4:10 to play and built the advantage out to six on a Bowman Jr. layup with 1:27 left.

Down by six with 40 seconds left, Radford’s Justin Cousin hit a 3-pointer from the corner then after a stop, Bolstad got a layup off an inbounds to make it a one-point game, 59-58.

High Point wraps up the first half of conference play on Thursday, Jan. 26, when the team welcomes Charleston Southern to the Millis Center. The contest will be HPU’s only home game in a five game stretch with two road games on either side. Tip in the game is set for 7 p.m.