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Boulevard Blow

Boulevard Blow

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - - Belmont University men's basketball dropped a 74-66 decision to Lipscomb Monday night from the Curb Event Center.

Belmont had gone 2,152 days and two conferences between losses to the rival Bisons, having won 11 straight in the Battle of the Boulevard series.

But following a 26-26 first half, Lipscomb made its first seven shots of the second half in building a 45-33 lead.

Consecutive 3-pointers from Eli Pepper and Garrison Mathews extended the margin to 17, 53-36, with 12:19 remaining, before the Bruins finally found some offensive range.

Senior Amanze Egekeze (Lake in the Hills, Ill.) capped a 12-1 run to get Belmont within 64-63 with 3:14 left.

But with the boisterous Bruin student section ready to propel Belmont to the lead, Kenny Cooper came up with a timely steal and score to put Lipscomb ahead by three.

Freshman Nick Hopkins (Fayetteville, Tenn.) trimmed the margin to 68-66 with 1:30 left.

Lipscomb scored the final six points of the game.

Junior Dylan Windler (Indianapolis, Ind.) led Belmont with 13 points and 11 rebounds, his sixth double-double of the season.

Mathews led Lipscomb (4-2) with 22.

Lipscomb, under 40 percent from the field on the season, shot 62 percent in the second half, while Belmont shot a season-low 35 percent.

Belmont lost for just the seventh time in its last 100 home games.

The game also spolied head coach Rick Byrd's 1000th career game as head coach at Belmont, ironically coming at the hands of his former player and assistant coach - and current Lipscomb head coach - Casey Alexander.

Belmont (4-3) returns to game action Wednesday, Nov. 29 at No. 23 TCU. Tip-off is set for 8 p.m. CT.