BARBOURVILLE, Ky. - Union College dropped its first contest in their last five, losing in thrilling fashion Monday to Appalachian Athletic Conference foe Bluefield (Va.) College, 73-70 in overtime.
The loss for the Bulldogs drops their record to 14-12 and 8-5 in conference play while the win pushes Bluefield to 12-12 and 8-5 in conference action.
The end of regulation saw the score knotted up at 64-64. Bluefield raced out to a five point lead early in overtime. Union pulled back to within 71-70 with 1:37 remaining, but a late offensive rebound by the Rams led to a Carlton Shumake layup, pushing the lead to 73-70 with 24 seconds remaining and the Bulldogs never recovered.
Darrel Jackson (Jonesboro, Ark.) led the Bulldogs in scoring, netting a game-high 20 points on 9-of-17 shooting (52.9 percent) from the field. Josh Hurd (Independence, Ky.) was dominant in the paint for the Bulldogs, tallying 18 points on the evening, while also grabbing nine rebounds. Hurd converted every shot he took in the contest, going 8-for-8 from the field, as well as 2-for-2 from the free-throw line.
The Rams' defensive pressure combined with solid free throw shooting proved to be too much for the Bulldogs to overcome. Bluefield forced Union into 20 turnovers while only committing 15 of their own and converted 15-22 (68.2 percent) from the foul line.
The Rams' were led by the hot hand of Borgia M'Bala, who tallied 19 points on 8-for-13 (61.5 percent) shooting, 3-for-6 from behind the 3-point arc. Omar Reed notched a double-double on the evening, chipping in 18 points while hauling in 10 boards.
The overtime loss is the first contest the Bulldogs have dropped all season when playing an extra stanza (2-1), all of which were conference meetings. The loss also ended what would have been a five-game winning streak for Union.
The Bulldogs return to action Wednesday night for another home tilt against conference leader Tennessee Wesleyan College. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.