Longwood broke a four game skid tonight taking down a solid Columbia team 70-69 on the road. It was the Lancers first non-conference true road win since November 2013 when Longwood took down TCU.
Coach Gee spoke postgame about how the team got together at the Maine team and decided to not talk about personnel limitations and rather on reinventing the team based on the current personnel.
It worked! Longwood was just solid Saturday night, that’s definitely the best word to describe their effort. They took care of the basketball and held a very good Columbia team in check. The “new look” Lancers played solid defense and put together a formula that can pay immediate dividends with a conference match up on the horizon Wednesday.
Leron Fisher was the Player of the Game tonight as he showed tremendous effort against one of the mid-major ranks best guards, Maodo Lo. Fisher finished the night with 18 points, 8 assists, and 5 rebounds. His 6-8 performance from the charity stripe helped Longwood seal the deal. Fisher also held Lo in check with just 9 points.
Best Player on the Court
Lotanna Nwogbo battled some foul trouble tonight but he was clutch to say the least. The big man had 14 points and 2 rebounds but it was his 8-9 performance from the line that was the biggest difference in this win. Lancer fans don’t realize what a luxury Nwogbo is especially given the fact he’s a big man that can nail free throws.
We can’t say enough about DJ Allen this year. He’s a silent assassin and most of his work goes without praise. We thought before the game that Khris Lane would draw Columbia big Alex Rosenburg on defense, but instead it was Allen who kept him in check from the perimeter. It was a good adjustment from coach Gee as early in the game Nwogbo matched up with Roseburg and he just didn’t have the quickness to stay in step with the Lions’ big.
Looking for a Hero
Chris Shields was the hero tonight nailing a difficult layup with 6 seconds to play to win the game for Longwood. Shields continues to impress in his freshman campaign and finished with 8 points and 4 rebounds.
We can’t forget about Kanayo Obi-Rapu and Khris Lane though. Obi-Rapu caught fire from beyond the arc down the stretch and kept Longwood in the game. The sophomore finished with 15 points and 4 rebounds. Lane also hit some big shots, stretching the floor for 9 points and 7 rebounds.
It’s pretty exciting for Lancer fans when you think that all three of these guys are just sophomores or freshmen.
Longwood heads to High Point Wednesday for a conference clash against the Big South preseason favorite. The Lancers have not beaten the Panthers since joining the Big South.