Longwood shuts down Gallaudet in blowout win on Education Day

Published 7:00 pm Monday, December 11, 2023

On Education Day at the Joan Perry Brock Center, Longwood men’s basketball rebounded from a slow start against a hot-shooting Gallaudet side.

Four players scored in double figures for the Lancers (10-1), who won 92-61 over the Bison (1-12). It was Longwood’s 10th straight win, which matches the longest winning streak in the nation.

Szymon Zapala had 13 points for the Lancers, while Michael Christmas provided 11 points and 11 rebounds. Coupled with 10 points apiece for Saxby Sunderland and Walyn Napper, that was enough to overcome a herculean effort by Gallaudet’s Blessed Mbogo, who poured in a career best 30 points. Gallaudet is a federally chartered private and premier university for the deaf and hard of hearing since 1864.

Email newsletter signup

“It was a privilege to play Gallaudet today,” said Longwood Head Coach Griff Aldrich. “I was so impressed with their desire to compete and battle and watch them do it while facing challenges many of us never consider. They were impressive throughout and gave us a great test today! The Bison earned a few new fans in Farmville today!”

Breaking down the game

Mbogo got off to a fantastic start, canning his first two triples, as Gallaudet couldn’t miss from distance for much of the first half. He had eight of the team’s first 10 points while the Bison jumped out to an early advantage.

In the first half, Gallaudet hit eight threes, including five of its first seven attempts from distance. They finished by hitting 12 for the game, the team’s season high.

After the Bison pushed the lead to 29-23 on back-to-back threes, Longwood’s interior presence muscled the team back into the game. Christmas powered home a layup to start a 10-1 run that Elijah Tucker capped with a slam for a 33-30 lead.

The score was tied at 36 thanks to some more timely threes by the visitors, but a Zapala hook shot kicked off a 10-0 Longwood run that closed the half.

After halftime, the Lancers repeatedly attacked the paint to build some separation. The threes dried up for Gallaudet as well. Longwood led by 20 for the large majority of the second half.

What’s next for Longwood?

The Lancers head back on the road with a quick turnaround, as they play at Milwaukee on Wednesday night. Tip is set for 8 p.m. eastern. The game will air on ESPN+ and on the radio on WVHL 92.9 Kickin’ Country.