Blakley joins 1,000-point club, but No. 11 Union falls

Published 1:39 pm Thursday, January 24, 2019

BARBOURVILLE — Lance Blakley became the 29th member of the Union College 1,000-point club; however, visiting Milligan College quelled the celebration as it handed the 11th-ranked Bulldogs an 80-75 Appalachian Athletic Conference (AAC) loss on Wednesday.

Blakley entered the game one point shy of the milestone and promptly got his 1,000th point, scoring the Bulldogs’ first basket of the game. He finished with eight points to put him at 1,007 for his career, ranking 28th in program history.

The loss drops Union to 16-5 overall and 11-3 in the AAC, while Milligan improves to 16-5 overall and 11-4 in league play.

TURNING POINT

With the exception of a 2-2 tie, Milligan led the entire first half en route to a 34-30 advantage at the break. As the second half unfolded, it appeared to be more of the same as the Buffaloes opened up a 46-39 lead following a Bo Pless 3-pointer at the 16:54 mark. Yet, an 8-0 run sent Union up one with 15:29 to play. Jabari Antwine began the rally with a 3-pointer, and K.J. Duronslet followed with a basket and another 3-pointer for the 47-46 lead.

However, that ended up being the Bulldogs’ first and last lead of the game.

Milligan countered with an 8-0 surge of its own to open up a 54-47 cushion with 13:38 on the clock. Union continued to battle, cutting the margin down to one twice with the final time coming at 65-64.

Union kept attempting to make a run, but Milligan had an answer at every turn to hold on for the 80-75 victory.

BULLDOG OF THE GAME

Duronslet went 4-for-5 from 3-point range in posting a game-high 24 points. He connected on 9-of-15 shots from the floor and hit both of his free throws. He also grabbed seven rebounds and collected three steals.

STAT OF THE GAME

After going 1-for-6 from long range in the first half, Milligan went 5-for-8 in the second half to help it maintain its advantage throughout much of the contest.

BULLDOG NOTES

The loss snaps a nine-game win streak against Milligan. The Buffaloes’ last win was a 70-69 affair on Dec. 1, 2014.

Blakley is the third player to score 1,000 points under head coach Kevin Burton, joining Deante Johnson (2012-15 – 1,216 points) and Gerrard Newby (2013-17 – 1,744 points).

Jakobe Wharton and Antwine joined Duronslet in scoring in double figures, finishing with 13 and 10 points, respectively.

NEXT FOR THE BULLDOGS

Union travels to Bryan College (Tenn.) on Saturday for another AAC contest. Game time is slated for 4 p.m.