Late First-Half Rally Sends St. Gregory's to 84-75 Win Over Men's Basketball

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SHAWNEE, Okla. -- Junior Ricky Roberts scored a team-high 24 points for the John Brown mens basketball team (11-18, 4-13 SAC), but St. Gregorys (Okla.) captured an 85-74 win behind 27 points from Richard Shields on Thursday (Feb. 25) night inside the Sumner Fieldhouse.

In what will inevitably be a first-round matchup at the upcoming Sooner Athletic Conference tournament, the Cavaliers (10-15, 5-12 SAC) posted its best shooting effort of the season, hitting 27-of-47 attempts from the field (57.4 percent) and knocked down 5-of-11 from the arc. JBU shot near its season average, scoring on 22-of-54 chances (40.7 percent), but converted on 24-of-31 from the line to stay in contention.

Shields finished 9-of-14 from the floor and 8-of-11 from the free throw line in addition to dishing out a game-best six assists. It was the sixth consecutive game Shields has eclipsed 20 points.

The hosts enjoyed a 34-31 edge on the boards and scored 19 points off 14 JBU turnovers. John Brown, meanwhile, forced 18 SGU turnovers, but could only manufacture 18 points as a result.

Roberts hit 9-of-15 from the field while junior Nate Anderson contributed 12 points and a team-best seven rebounds. Junior Zach English came off the bench to add a season-best 14 points.

Shields was one of four Cavaliers in double figures. Stephen Walter (12 points) and Kevin Ritchie (10 points) had solid evenings as Ritchie also pulled down a career-high seven rebounds.

After an early five-point lead, JBU continued to hang close, and pulled within 21-20 after Englishs jumper at the 7:55 mark. However, the Cavs then created some separation late in the first half with a 15-4 spurt to close out the first half. The Golden Eagles were held to a pair of field goals over the final 7:54 of the first half, handing the hosts a 36-27 lead at the intermission.

SGU opened the second half with a 12-2 run to take its largest lead at 48-29 with 15:16 to play. John Brown had another surge in store, however, outscoring the hosts 21-10 over the next 6:47 to pull within eight, 58-50, at the 8:29 mark.

That's as close as the Golden Eagles would get, however, as the Cavs reeled off nine of the game's next 11 points to push the lead back to 15.

With the losing streak now at eight games, the Golden Eagles will close out the regular season on Saturday (Feb. 27) when it hosts Science & Arts (Okla.) at Bill George Arena. The jump is slated for 5 p.m.

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