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Men’s basketball overwhelms opponents in home opener

NASHVILLE, Tennessee – For the first time in 2022-23, the Lipscomb men’s basketball team took the floor in front of the Allen Arena crowd.

Coach Lennie Acuff’s team certainly did not disappoint the homecoming weekend crowd with their 107-54 win over the Campbellsville University-Harrodsburg Pioneers. 

The Bisons showed their hand early, they were going to be aggressive on both ends. That aggressiveness resulted in five Campbellsville-Harrodsburg turnovers before the 15 minute mark, and a 15-11 Lipscomb lead heading into the second media timeout. 

The Bisons scoring attack was balanced early on in the afternoon and featured early buckets from Derrin Boyd, Will Pruitt, Ahsan Asadullah, Jacob Ognacevic, and Matthew Schner. 

That group sparked a 15-2 run that allowed the Bisons to extend their lead to 29-13. 

Acuff then emptied his bench and played 10 different players before the conclusion of the Bisons’ dominant first half. 

Boyd punctuated the half with a deep three that electrified the large Allen Arena crowd and put the Bisons up 53-21 heading into the break. 

From there, the Bisons didn’t look back. 

Lipscomb led by more than 30 points or more for almost the entirety of the second half and looked dominant throughout the afternoon, no matter what lineup was on the floor. 

With 3:22 to go, sophomore forward Grant Asman, knocked down a free throw to put the Bisons in triple digits for the first time in the 2022-23 season. 

Shortly thereafter, the remaining crowd erupted as walk-on guard Jack Ingold took a charge, grabbed an offensive rebound and finished a putback layup in his first action of the season. 

The Bisons won by a final score of 107-54 and showed flashes of excellence throughout their home debut. 

Lipscomb dominates from start to finish

Junior guard Will Pruitt, started out the afternoon with a crafty finish in the lane and from that point the Bisons did not look back. 

Acuff’s team trailed for just 19 seconds throughout the afternoon and got the better of the Pioneers in every statistical category except for steals and turnovers. 

Lipscomb also outrebounded the Pioneers 40-16 and outshot them by 24% from 3-point range. 

The Bisons looked better than Campbellsville-Harrodsburg in every aspect throughout the night and completely dominated the Pioneers throughout the afternoon. 

There isn’t much not to like about how things went for Lipscomb tonight. 

Three Quick Takes: 

Saturday was Derrin Boyd’s coming out party 

All offseason, rumblings of Derrin Boyd or “Deebo’s” quickness, off the dribble ability, defensive ability, and general talent bubbled up within Lipscomb’s campus. 

The Georgetown College transfer showed flashes of all that ability in Lipscomb’s loss against South Dakota, but ended with just seven points on eight field goal attempts. 

Tonight, Boyd tied that scoring total before the 7:00 mark of the first half. 

Without saying anything, the prized transfer announced to the Allen Arena crowd: “I’m here” when he got an isolation touch at the end of the half, handled ball pressure with poise, created separation, and made a deep three. 

Boyd’s 16-point performance was the model of efficiency as well, with the transfer shooting 6-7 from the field and 3-3 from the floor in 21 minutes while grabbing five rebounds. 

This season’s Lipscomb’s backcourt looks to be significantly more athletic, quicker, and more productive as a whole than it did last year, Boyd will certainly be a big part of that. 

Lipscomb looked much better defensively than it did on Wednesday

The main emphasis point for Acuff’s team this off-season was their defense. That emphasis point showed up at times on Wednesday, but the way that the Bisons defended in South Dakota cost them in a catastrophic second half. 

With a different opponent came a different confidence on the defensive end for Lennie Acuff’s talented team. 

Acuff’s group didn’t just want stops, they wanted turnovers. 

From the jump, Boyd, Pruitt, Benham, AJ McGinnis, and Quincy Clark attacked the Pioneers guards from baseline to baseline. Something the Bisons didn’t do in South Dakota. 

Lipscomb forced 11 first half turnovers and held the Pioneers to just 21 points throughout the half. 

Campbellsville-Harrodsburg also shot just 32% from the field and 10% from beyond the arc in the first half. 

Lipscomb gave up just a staggering 54 points in the contest and played with a different level of confidence defensively than they had previously. The group will see plenty of better offensive teams than they did today throughout the season, but the group showed some things on the defensive end that can translate to those opponents. 

Take it all with a grain of salt 

It was important for Lipscomb to exit Allen Arena with a win, but it was a game that the Bisons were heavily expected to win. 

Campbellsville-Harrodsburg has plenty of athleticism and quickness, but they aren’t the type of team that Lipscomb will see once they reach conference play. 

Earlier this week, the Pioneers lost to the Morehead State Eagles, who Lipscomb beat in a “secret” scrimmage, by a final score of 99-58. 

There are certainly some encouraging signs to take away from a game in which Lipscomb eclipsed 100 points, won by 53 and had 5 players score in double figures, but to take a game like this as a significant indicator of the way the rest of the season will go. 

Lipscomb moves to 1-1 on the season heading into Monday night’s contest against rival opponent Belmont. That game will be streamed live on The Bison, Lipscomb’s on-campus radio station.

Photo by Parker O’Neal