Turnovers, free throws spoil John Brown’s effort against City

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SILOAM SPRINGS, Ark. -- Ten second-half turnovers and the emergence of Lou Dunbar halted a lead that lasted throughout the majority of the game as No. 18 Oklahoma City overcame a seven-point second half deficit to take down the John Brown University men's basketball team by an 84-76 final on Thursday (Dec. 1) evening inside Bill George Arena.

The Golden Eagles (7-4, 0-1 SAC) carried a 44-37 lead into the break after shooting 53.3 percent in the first half. Nine first-half turnovers handcuffed the Stars (7-0, 1-0) despite the visitors shooting an impressive 60.4 percent from the floor in the first half.

Maintaining the lead until almost midway through the final stanza, a 14-3 City run over a 3:31 span evaporated a 55-51 John Brown lead that converted into a 62-55 Stars advantage. OCU never allowed the hosts to regain control of the lead.

Proving pivotal was the Golden Eagle effort at the line. JBU hit just 16-of-24 (66.7 percent).

Also key to the City comeback effort was the resurgence of Lou Dunbar, OCU's leading scorer, who was silenced to just three points in the first half. Dunbar took control of the second half, scoring 24 of his game-high 27 points, shooting 8-of-10 from the field in the final 20 minutes of play.

Aided by a quintet of double-digit scorers, Xavier Smith scored 12 points and grabbed six boards and Tyler Alderman added 12 points before fouling out late in the contest. Syrus McDonald and Terence Bonhomme added 11 and 10, respectively, as the Stars remain unbeaten so far this season.

The visitors shot an unprecedented 60.4 percent from the floor (32-of-53) to compensate for its 15 turnovers. The Golden Eagle shooting declined from 53.3 percent in the first half to 33.3 percent in the second half (9-of-27).

Senior Zach English scored a season-high 21 points on 6-of-7 shooting from the floor while sophomore Jake Caudle hit four triples and finished 7-of-10 from the field to add 18 points. Senior Ricky Roberts notched 10 points and dished out three assists.

JBU secured a season-best 15 offensive boards, but could only translate the extra opportunities into 13 second-chance points. Oklahoma City, meanwhile, enjoyed a 10-point advantage in the paint, 44-34.

The Golden Eagles will hit the road for its first away conference outing of the season on Saturday (Dec. 3). JBU will travel to Shawnee, Okla. to take on St. Gregory's in a 5 p.m. matchup.

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