Brevard, N.C. - Josh Roper hit 1,000 points in his Brevard College career, scoring a team-high 17, but the Tommy Klempin scored a game-high 19 points and added six rebounds as the Tornados were unable to complete the season sweep over the visiting Tusculum Pioneers, falling in Boshamer Gymnasium, 67-63.
Roper became the fifth player in modern program history to break the 1,000 point plateau, hitting a pair of free throws with 17:04 to play in the second half in joining this prestigious group. Vincent Dombrowski added 14 points, hitting a pair of three’s late in the game and Drew Schauss added 10 points as the Tornados (8-10, 5-7 SAC) shot 46.5 percent (20-43) from the floor in the game.
Klempin led the Pioneers (10-12, 7-5 SAC) with 19 points, going seven of nine from the free throw line, while Rob Troutman added 15 points as the Pioneers avenged the 77-72 loss to the Tornados on December 30th in Pioneer Arena. Justin Steigerwald added seven points and six assists as the Pioneers hit 80.0 percent (28-35) of their free throw attempts in the game, overcoming an 11 point halftime deficit in the win.
A scorebook infraction sent Troutman to the line before the tip and the senior forward hit both free throws to give Tusculum the early 2-0 lead, but Roper scored on Brevard’s opening possession to tie the game.
The score was tied three times in the early minutes before a three-pointer by Ryson Felder at the 15:53 mark put Brevard up three at 11-8 as the Tornados would build an eight point lead, using a 12-4 run capped by another layup by Roper as the senior guard from Charlotte, N.C. scored 15 points in the first half, putting the score at 20-12 with 10:55 to play in the half.
The Pioneers would bring the game to three following a layup by J.D. Miller off the assist from Troutman to put the score at 23-20 with 7:51 to play, but Brevard would close out the opening 20 minutes with an 11-3 run, with Roper fueling the run with six points as the Tornados would go into the locker room possessing the 34-23 lead.
The Pioneers would score 15 of the first 17 points of the second half as Klempin poured in 10 points in the first five minutes of the half on a variety of layups and free throws, with the final two free throws of the run coming at the 15:28 mark and giving Tusculum the 38-37 lead.
A three-pointer by Schauss off the Roper assist gave the Tornados the 40-38 lead, but Dionte Grey answered with a layup to tie the game up as the Pioneers built a five point lead with 9:42 to play in the game as Troutman connected on a three-pointer from the left corner, putting the score at 47-42.
A driving layup by Dombrowski tied the game for the sixth time at 48 apiece with 8:04 to play and Dombrowski added a pair of free throws as the Tornados clung to the lead for the next five minutes. The Pioneers continued to strike as an offensive rebound and put-in by Klempin gave the Pioneers the 53-52 lead with 2:16 and Tusculum looked to put the game away at the free throw line, hitting 11 out of 12 chances from the charity stripe in the final minute of the game.
Jermichael Tanner and Dombrowski hit three three-pointers in Brevard’s final three possessions of the game, but Ryan Slusher put the game away with 1.5 seconds on the clock, draining a pair of free throws as the Pioneers defeated the Tornados, 67-63.
Tusculum held the 30-25 rebounding advantage in the contest with three players pulling down six rebounds, while Josh Jordan pulled down a game-high seven for Brevard as the Tornados fell for the seventh time in their past eight games.
The Tornados look to get back on track on Wednesday, February 9th, as they host Catawba College in Boshamer Gymnasium. The Tornados took the first game of the season series against the Indians on January 12th, 80-75, and will look to complete the sweep with tipoff coming at 8 p.m.