MOREHEAD, Ky. – Losing to Belmont is never a part of the master plan for the Lipscomb men’s basketball team.
Yet, despite dropping an 87-83 contest to their rival on Nov. 15, the Bisons have since reeled off three-straight victories and have their season trending in a positive direction just as the nonconference schedule starts to get serious.
“After that Belmont loss, we just knew we didn’t play like we should have,” senior forward Rob Marberry said. “When we have a loss like that, you have to [figure out] what you did wrong, and we did.”
It was certainly a productive Thanksgiving break for the Bisons, who also defeated SMU and No. 18 TCU earlier in the week. The win over the Horned Frogs was Lipscomb’s first-ever victory over a ranked team.
“We went into the game knowing that we had a shot,” Marberry said. “We can beat any team, we can beat anybody right now. We have that in the back of our head throughout each game and [try to] play like it.”
Lipscomb’s latest conquest came Sunday afternoon at Morehead State – an 87-55 drubbing that was never really in doubt. And the Bisons showed no signs of a letdown after their two wins in Texas.
“What I was most concerned about with our team was the mentality that we took to the floor,” Lipscomb coach Casey Alexander said. “But I was as pleased as I’ve been in a long time with our effort and our desire to play well.”
Marberry finished with 13 points and six rebounds for Lipscomb. After missing Lipscomb’s first two games with a broken hand, the big man said he is feeling like himself again.
“I’m feeling pretty good right now,” Marberry said. “I feel like a fifth-year senior – aches and pains every once in a while, but it’s all right.”
Three other Lipscomb players – Ahsan Asadullah (15 points), Nathan Moran (12 points) and Michael Buckland (11 points) – also finished in double figures in a game where the scoring was spread around to 11 different Bisons.
“We have a lot of guys [on the bench] that are good enough to be playing more than they are,” Alexander said. “That’s a tough thing when you know you can contribute, but you’re not getting the opportunities that you want because somebody in front of you is better.”
Instead of letting the Belmont setback throw off their mojo, Lipscomb seems to be hitting its stride as ASUN play looms closer.
“We’ve put together three really good games, and I think that’s a product of our experience and having been there before,” Alexander said. “Our guys know that what we want is to show up and be the same team every time we play.”
The Bisons are now 5-1 with seven nonconference games remaining, including two important contests at local opponents in the next 10 days. First up is Middle Tennessee (3-4) on Saturday, followed by a rematch at Belmont (5-0) on Dec. 4.
“I’m honestly a lot less concerned about results than most people are,” Alexander said. “I just want to coach the mentality of our team and know that they’re ready and playing together, because I know that that gives us the best chance to win.”
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