LOOKOUT MOUNTAIN, Ga. - LaGrange's late rally came up short as Covenant held on for an 89-85 USA South win Thursday night. The Panthers are now 2-3 overall and 0-1 in conference play.
Junior guard Jamison McCray had a career high 27 points for the Panthers. Senior guard Alex Bonner followed with 22 points. He became the 29th LC player to reach 1,000 career points when he scored on layup as part of a three-point play with 47 seconds left in the game.
"It's a great accolade for Alex. He's a great player and it's a good individual award," Coach Kendal Wallace said. "But right now we need to work on our team. We're not playing very well as a team.
"We outrebounded them, we shot more shots than them, and shot a very good free throw percenatage. We just can't stop anybody, we're not playing very good defense."
The Panthers shot 88.5 percent at the free throw line, making 23-of-26. It was the highest free throw percentage since 90.9 percent (20-of-22) against Auburn-Montgomery on Dec. 5, 2015.
The Panthers trailed by 19 with 5:34 left. Bonner's three-point play got LC within seven, 87-80. Jamison McCray completed his own three-point play to make it a four-point game, 89-85 but the Panthers could pull no closer.
Covenant (2-1, 1-0 USA South) led 44-43 at halftime. The Panthers scored the first four points of the second half on layups by Bonner and McCray. The Scots took the lead for good with 16 minutes left.
The Panthers break for final exams until facing Berea and Maryville in USA South games Dec. 16-17 in Mariotti Gym.