LaGrange prevailed 80-73 in overtime over visiting Brevard on Sunday afternoon in Mariotti Gym. The Panthers stopped a two-game skid, while improving to 5-3 overall and 2-1 in USA South play.
The Panthers let a 12-point led slip away in the second half. Brevard (4-5, 1-2 USA South) was helped by five Panther turnovers over the final six minutes of regulation. LC forced 21 turnovers by the Tornados and finished with 20.
"We helped them a lot in that aspect of things," said Coach Kendal Wallace. "Brevard has a good basketball team and they're going to be better down the road. A good win for us at home. We had a good week of practice and I felt like we were very prepared in everything that we were going to try to do.
"We struggle with hanging on to the basketball and we don't make good decisions. Every game we've lost we've beat ourselves by turning the ball over and getting out rebounded. We really tried to make that the emphasis this week in practice and it looks like we need to go back to practice. We've got to get better if we're going to compete for the USA South championship."
The Panthers controlled the rebounding. They had a 41-30 advantage on the boards, including 12-5 on the offensive glass. The Panthers outscored the Tornados 17-2 on second chance points.
Anderson came off the bench with a career high 16 points to go with 5 rebounds. Jamison McCray tied Anderson for team honors with 16 points. Thompson had all 10 of his points in the first half. McCallum played only three minutes in the second half after picking up his fourth foul. He finished with 9 points, 8 rebounds, and 2 blocks.
The Panthers led 34-33 at halftime. The two teams swapped leads six times in the second half. McCray's put back of a missed shot put LC up 64-52 with 6:28 left. The Tornados chipped away at the lead, tying the game at 67 with 7 seconds left on Levi Lamb's two free throws. Lamb led all scorers with 22 points.
LC never trailed in the extra period, using the free throw line to win the game. The Panthers were 11-of-14 at the line, with Gary Bishop making 7-of-8 himself. Anderson's dunk off an assist from Bishop was the only basket for the Panthers in overtime and gave them a 76-69 lead. Bishop and Elijah Adedoyin each made a pair of free throws for the 80-73 final margin.
The Panthers shot a season-best 82.1 percent from the free throw line in the game, making 23-of-28. Brevard was 13-of-19 at the line.
The Panthers travel to Daytona Beach, Florida for the Daytona Beach Shootout on Tuesday and Wednesday. LC will face St. Joseph (Conn.) on Tuesday and Marian (Wisc.). St. Joseph is coached by Jim Calhoun, who won three NCAA Division I championships at the University of Connecticut.
Notes: The Panthers improved to 3-0 against Brevard... Two of the wins have come in overtime, both in Mariotti Gym... The Panthers are now 12-7 n overtime games under Wallace, winning their last four in a row and 12 of their last 15... LC has now had 10 straight seasons with at least one overtime game...