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Murray, Grier Pace Eagles Past EMU

Liam Caswell scores for the Eagles.

HARRISONBURG, Va. - Chandler Murray and Davrion Grier combined for 47 points Monday night to lead the Eagles to a 72-67 victory over rival Eastern Mennonite in a non-conference game at Yoder Arena.

Murray carried the Eagles' offense in the first, scoring 17 of the team's 28 points to keep things close as Bridgewater trailed by five, 33-28, at the half. Murray finished the contest with a game-high 27 points.

Grier took over in the second half, scoring all 20 of his points in the final 20 minutes.

The Royals stretched their lead to eight when Mizz Nyagwegwe hit a 3-pointer to open the second-half scoring. Murray answered with a four-point play, but the Royals again stretched the margin out, leading by eight, 40-32, with 17:28 left in the game.

Bridgewater then overtook EMU with a 9-0 spurt. Grier scored all nine points during the run to push the Eagles ahead 41-40, at the 15:08 mark. The teams traded jabs over the next five minutes with the Eagles still holding a one-point lead, 49-48, with 10 minutes to go.

A 3-pointer by Grier with 7:13 remaining put the Eagles up, 59-54, and two foul shots by TJ Turner made it a seven-point lead, 61-54, with 6:22 on the clock. Two more free throws from Turner gave the Eagles their biggest lead of the game, 63-54, with 5:18 left to play.

The Royals continued to chip away at the margin and pulled to within two, 69-67, when Tie Evans converted a four-point play with 22 seconds remaining. Bridgewater then beat the Royals fullcourt pressure and Turner dished to Liam Caswell for a layup, making it a four-point lead with just 14 seconds left. 

While Murray and Grier carried the scoring load, several other Eagles made key contributions in the victory. Caswell turned in a solid all-around game with nine points, six rebounds and four assists. The Eagles dominated the boards by 54-41 margin. First-year forward Fletcher Jackson led the Eagles with 10 rebounds off the bench in 13 minutes of action. Murray had nine boards while Grier and Jalil Langston each finished with eight rebounds.

The Eagles are back in action Sunday afternoon when they host Lynchburg in ODAC action.