LEXINGTON, Va. – The VMI men’s basketball team gave league-leading Wofford College all it could handle Saturday afternoon, but it wasn’t enough as the visiting Terriers defeated the Keydets 90-76 in Southern Conference play.
VMI opened the game on a tear, hitting its first six shots en route to opening a 17-6 lead in the first five minutes. Keydet freshman center Jake Stephens earned his first start of the season and responded with two three-pointers and a layup in that span for eight early points. The Terriers chipped away at the deficit and went into halftime ahead 40-38.
The Keydets trailed by just three (61-58) at the 11:27 mark after a basket by Greg Parham, but a 20-2 run over the next seven minutes allowed Wofford to open a 81-60 lead and put the contest out of reach.
Garrett Gilkeson paced VMI with team-highs of 17 points and seven rebounds, and also added three assists and two steals. Stephens finished with 11 points and five rebounds, his third double-digit scoring game in conference action. Myles Lewis, Bubba Parham and Greg Parham each posted 10 points, Lewis also contributed five rebounds while Bubba Parham added four assists. Sarju Patel narrowly missed being the sixth VMI player to reach double figures, finishing with nine.
The Keydets defense held Wofford to just 26 percent shooting from three-point range (6-23), including just 1-of-7 from conference all-time three-point leader Fletcher Magee. The Terriers had a 40 percent shooting mark from distance prior to today’s action.
Wofford (14-4/6-0 SoCon) forced a season-high 22 Keydet turnovers, while only committing nine. Nathan Hoover posted a game-high 25 points and Cameron Jackson had a double-double with 23 points and 10 rebounds. Keve Aluma had nine points and six rebounds.
The Keydets (6-11/0-5 SoCon) travel to East Tennessee State University Thursday for another SoCon game at 7 p.m.
Quotes from Head Coach Dan Earl:
"Wofford is a tremendous team, tremendously coached. They have a lot of good players that can hurt you from the perimeter and the post. Cameron Jackson had a great first half. We were trying to play out on shooters, but we were right there in it. And it was a six-point game at the nine-minute mark. For 31 minutes we were fighting, clawing, scratching. And then, unfortunately we fell off a cliff."
"I'm proud of our guys for responding to adversity after a tough night Thursday night (Furman). We talked about turning the page and moving on. We just have to continue to work on responding to adversity during the game."