Hampden-Sydney knocks off No. 1 Christopher Newport

Published 7:18 am Thursday, December 15, 2022

Junior Davidson Hubbard scored a game-high and career-high 26 points, adding a game-high nine rebounds, to lead Hampden-Sydney to an 85-70 upset at No. 1 Christopher Newport. Senior Ryan Clements added 15 points for the visiting Tigers (7-3), who trailed Tuesday night 38-37 at halftime. 

The Tigers came back in the second half, however, outsourcing top-ranked CNU 48-32. Juniors Adam Brazil and Josiah Hardy each had 10 points for the visitors, while Ty Henderson scored 18 points for the host Captains (9-1), who fell for the first time this season and had their 22-game home winning streak stopped.

“Big road win for the Tigers!” said fourth-year head coach Caleb Kimbrough. “Proud of the guys for coming off of exams and showing the grit to prepare to take care of business tonight. We have a very selfless team that just keeps getting better.”

Breaking down the game

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Hampden-Sydney took an early 4-0 lead as Hubbard scored on an offensive rebound basket at 19:29, before adding a running hook shot in the lane at 18:55, but CNU responded with a 10-4 run to lead 10-8 at 14:59. The Tigers went back in front at 12-10 with 13:22 on the clock following baskets down low from Hubbard and Clements, but the Captains responded with a quick 9-3 run to lead 19-15 at 11:01.

The visitors answered back with a quick 7-2 run of their own to lead 22-21 at 8:43, getting five points from Hubbard and a slam dunk by Clements. H-SC extended is advantage to 33-28 at 5:19 after a step-back three-point field goal from Brazil, but the hosts closed the half with a 10-4 run to lead 38-37 at the intermission, including a buzzer-beating layup for the one-point margin.

CNU continued its momentum to begin the second half, taking a 43-37 lead at 18:17, but Hampden-Sydney answered back with three consecutive three-pointers, including two by Hubbard and the other by freshman Ryan Blakey-who had a trio of three-pointers in the second half-to retake the lead at 46-43 with 16:18 left to play. The contest was tied at 46-46 before the Tigers took the lead for good with 15:01 on the clock after a layup by Hardy that started a 17-7 run that had the Garnet & Grey ahead 63-53 at 9:27.

The outburst included three-pointers from Brazil, senior Miles Harris and Blakey. The Captains managed to get within 63-56 at 8:26, but H-SC pushed the lead to 77-63 with 3:03 remaining after a layup by Clements, and Hubbard secured the largest lead of the night at 81-65 on a slam dunk at 2:09 toward the final 85-70 margin of victory.

Hampden-Sydney, by the numbers

Hubbard led Hampden-Sydney with his game-high and career-high 26 points, making 11-17 field goals (2-4 3FGs) and 2-3 free throws, along with his game-high nine rebounds. Clements finished with 15 points and four rebounds for the Tigers. Brazil and Hardy each contributed 10 points, with Brazil adding a game-high six assists and Hardy adding eight rebounds.

Blakey had nine points and a career-high five assists, while junior Alex Elliott had eight points and six rebounds. H-SC shot a season-high 55% (34-62) from the field, including a season-high 45% (9-20) on three-pointers, and 77% (8-12) at the free throw line.

Henderson led CNU with his 18 points and a game-high four steals. Rodney Graves had 12 points and a game-high four steals, as well, for the Captains. CNU shot 43% (26-61) from the field, including 31% (8-26) on three-pointers, and 56% (10-18) at the line.

The contest featured 12 lead changes and was tied seven times before H-SC took control over the final 15 minutes. It was the Tigers’ first win against CNU in over 27 years, dating back to a 78-71 home win on March 2, 1995 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament played in S. Douglas Fleet Gymnasium. Ironically, H-SC also won on its last visit to CNU, 77-73, 35 years ago on December 5, 1987.

Up next for Hampden-Sydney

H-SC closes the calendar year with its participation in the Music City Classic hosted by Welch College next week in Gallatin, Tennessee near Nashville … playing non-conference and neutral-site games against Transylvania (KY) University on Monday, Dec. 19, at 4 p.m., followed by a game against Berry (GA) College on Tuesday, Dec. 20, at 4 p.m.