LAKELAND, Fla. — After a blistering offensive start from both squads, the Southeastern University men’s basketball team found their rhythm defensively to pull away from Great Lakes Christian 80-64.
It was back and forth in the early going as neither team could miss from the field. The Fire trailed 22-21 before Brandon Sanders went on a 6-0 run by himself to give his team a 27-22 edge. Sanders provided a spark for SEU off the bench, totaling ten points and two blocks in 12 minutes of action.
The two teams would trade baskets the remainder of the half before Southeastern took a 41-38 lead into the locker room.
Great Lakes Christian came out firing from beyond the arc, converting on eight of their 18 attempts from 3-PT range.
Southeastern, meanwhile, shot 51.5% from the field and were buoyed by Reggie Mesidor and Devon Ford who scored 12 and ten first half points, respectively.
It was a different story for GLCC in the second half as Southeastern clamped down defensively, holding the Crusaders to convert just 32.3% of their shots, including a 25% mark from three.
An 11-3 run from SEU to open the second half gave them separation and their lead would never get below seven points the remainder of the game.
Riley Matticks got into a groove offensively in the final 20 minutes of action, putting up ten points, grabbing eight rebounds and dishing out three assists. He recorded his first double-double in a Fire uniform as he finished with 17 points and ten rebounds.
Mesidor finished with a team-high 19 points and recorded two steals. Forward Devon Ford totaled 16 points and six rebounds.
Freshman Sean Shore had another nice outing with 12 points, two rebounds and a block. This was his third straight outing in double figures after not reaching that mark in his first eight games.
The Fire (9-5) return to action in Sun Conference play on Saturday when they host Webber International at 4:00 pm.