Lynchburg, Va. -- Senior forward Austin Wrighten (Woodbridge, Va.) scored the on a breakaway layup with 16 seconds remaining, helping the 22nd-ranked University of Lynchburg men's basketball team to a 68-66 Old Dominion Athletic Conference win over Virginia Wesleyan on a snowy Saturday afternoon.
Senior forward Connor Schroeder (Blacksburg, Va.) dumped in 17 points, including a pair of clutch 3-pointers in the waning minutes, to go with seven rebounds.
Sophomore forward T.C. Thacker (Madison Heights, Va.) earned his third-career double-double with 16 points and 13 rebounds, Wrighten scored 15 points and grabbed nine boards, and senior guard Jesse Case (Leesburg, Va.) contributed 10 points.
Tim Fisher led the way for the Marlins with 15 points and 11 rebounds.
Close throughout, the game featured six ties and 11 lead changes.
Lynchburg has taken three of the last four home meetings with Virginia Wesleyan, and the Hornets are currently riding an eight-game win streak.
Final: No. 22 Lynchburg 68, Virginia Wesleyan 66
Records: No. 22 Lynchburg (15-1, 6-1 ODAC), Virginia Wesleyan (7-9, 5-2 ODAC)
Venue: Wayne Proffitt Court at Turner Gymnasium, University of Lynchburg, Lynchburg, Va.
HOW IT HAPPENED
VWU jumped out to an early 11-7 lead before Lynchburg found its footing. Schroeder put the Hornets in front for the first time at the 13:31 mark with a layup, but the Marlins swiftly retook the lead.
A 6-0 run midway through the half gave Virginia Wesleyan some breathing room, however, and the Marlins led until halftime, taking a 41-34 advantage into the break.
Early in the second half, Case nailed a 3-pointer to put a cap on an 11-2 run and give Lynchburg a 45-43 lead. The lead was short-lived, however, as VWU's Keijon Honore sank a 3-pointer on the other end to put the visitors back up. Lynchburg took the advantage back on Wrighten's jumper with 11:49 to go, and his free throws 2 minutes later extended the advantage to five, Lynchburg's largest lead of the game.
VWU responded with a 14-3 barrage before Thacker broke up the run with a layup and Lynchburg called timeout with 4:40 remaining to regroup.
Schroeder hit a pair of clutch 3-pointers in the final 3 minutes, the second to tie the game at 66 with 1:09 to play.
Lynchburg forced a Marlins miss on the ensuing possession, but Fisher grabbed the rebound to give the visitors another shot at the lead. Before they could get the shot off, however, senior guard Devante' Young (Charlotte, N.C.) stole the ball away in the lane and batted it ahead to Wrighten, who made the game-winning layup in transition with 16 seconds to play. The Hornets defense held up again on the other end to preserve the victory.
The Hornets will face off next against the Washington and Lee Generals on Thursday, Jan. 17 at 7 p.m. in Lexington, Va.