Bikramjit Gill (Our Ascension of the Lord/Toronto, Ontario, Canada) had 12 points and 21 rebounds to lead the No. 15 Express men's basketball team to an 82-76 road win over Columbus State Community College today.
The Express trailed 63-52 with 9:01 remaining after Columbus State's Jordan Marrow nailed a 3-pointer from the left wing. From there, John Murry (North Central/Indianapolis, Ind.) hit three straight basekts in the paint to start the Express comeback.
After Murry's six straight points, Tony Boykins (Loy Norrix/Kalamazoo, Mich.), Andy Bachman (North Side/Fort Wayne, Ind.) and Gill hit lay-ups to pull the Express within three at 69-64 with 6:01 left.
Murry then hit a jumper to pull the Express within three before Columbus State's Bryan Porter hit 1-for-2 at the foul line. Shaakir Lindsey (Teaneck/Teaneck, N.J.) followed with a lay-up for the Express, but failed to convert the ensuing free throw.
Columbus State's Taivion Thomas hit 1-for-2 at the line to put his team back up three moments later. After a Boykins lay-up, Columbus State pushed their lead back up to five with 3:15 remaining.
The Express then closed the game on a 14-1 run, which was started by a 7-0 run that gave them the lead for good. After Thomas hit a lay-up to give Columbus State their five point lead, the Express got lay-ups from Gill and Murry, followed by a 3-pointer from the right wing from Bachman that made it 77-75 with 1:29 left.
Christopher Cook hit 1-for-2 at the line to pull the Cougars back within one, but Gill had a tip-in on the other end to make it 79-76 with 48 seconds left. From there, the Express got four straight free throws from Murry and Lindsey for the final margin.
Gill got 10 of his 21 rebounds on the offensive glass as he finished 6-for-16 from the field. Aside from his 12 points, he added two steals, one assist and one block. His 21 rebounds ties the single game program record, which he previously tied earlier this conference season against Lakeland Community College.
Murry, who was integral in the Express comeback in the second half, had a game-high 22 points on 9-for-15 shooting. He added eight rebounds, four steals and three assists.
Bachman had 21 points on 6-for-11 shooting, including five rebounds and a 5-for-5 performance at the stripe. Lindsey added 10 points, eight assists, three rebounds and two steals.
The Express got all of their points from the starting lineup as the bench finished 0-for-9 for the game from the field overall and 0-for-5 from 3-point range. The starters, on the other hand, shot 32-for-66 overall and 7-for-17 from 3-point range.
Additionally, the Express out-rebounded the Columbus State 50-39, including a 22-13 advantage on the offensive glass. Both teams turned the ball over 17 times, while Columbus State outscored the Express 24-22 in points off turnovers. The Express, on the other hand, outscored Columbus State 46-40 in paint points.
The Express (18-4, 5-0 Ohio Community College Athletic Conference) have now won six straight and 12 of 13 overall. They will travel to Cuyahoga Community College on Wednesday for a 7 p.m. matchup.
Columbus State fell to 8-9 overall and 1-4 in OCCAC play.