Clutch shooting down the stretch lifted the Bulldogs to a 68-64 win over Cumberland. This is the first conference win for Union as they improved to 1-4 in conference and 11-9 overall. Cumberland fell to 11-12 overall and 1-4 in the TranSouth.
Union had only a two point lead briefly on two occasions in the first half as Cumberland led for the majority of the half. Cumberland took a 37-30 lead into the locker room. The second half started off much the same as with 10 minutes to go in the game, Union still trailed by 7 points, 54-47. From that point, Union outscored Cumberland 21-10. In the last ten minutes Union made 11 straight free throws including 6-of-6 in the last 40 seconds to seal the win. Union's senior guard, Michael Katrosh once again came up big with back-to-back three pointers, the first to cut the Cumberland lead to just two at 61-59 and the second to give Union their first lead of the second half at 62-61. After that, Union made four straight free throws to move the lead to five. With four seconds remaining, Erik Smith of Cumberland made a three to cut the Union lead to just two. However, two free throws by senior Derrick Underwood sealed the deal giving Union this much need confidence builder.
Union was led by Bruno Martinessi with 21 points and eight rebounds. Michael Katrosh and Derrick Underwood added 15 and 12 respectively. Union made 21-of-26(.808) free throws for the game, including 16-of-17 in the second half. Cumberland was led by Jeremy Lewis with 21 points and Guasean Nicholson with 14.
Union plays next again Thursday, February 6 as they travel to Martin Methodist for an 8:00 p.m. game.