Tigerville, S.C. - Josh Roper had 20 points in the first half en route to a 30-point performance against the Crusaders and Jermichael Tanner hit several clutch free throws down the stretch as the Tornados survived a 21 of 23 (91.3 percent) effort from the free throw line in the second half by North Greenville in winning, 97-88 on Saturday afternoon.
Roper went 12-19 (63.2 percent) from the floor and 6-11 from behind the arc in leading the Tornados (1-1) with 30 points. He was joined in double-figures by four teammates as Brevard shot 57.6 (34-59) percent from the floor in the game. Jonathan Whitson had 10 points and led the team with seven rebounds in the contest, while Darin Dellinger had 15 points, including six key free throws down the stretch. Jacques Dovonou added 14 points as well as tough defensive play and Nathan Whitmire added 11 points off the bench in 20 minutes play.
North Greenville (1-2) was led by Kyler Vitko, who had 17 points in the second half as the Crusaders mounted a comeback, in scoring 21 in the contest. Paul Harrison added 17 points, and Luke Lattimer and Zack Shields were also in double-figures for North Greenville.
The Tornados opened the game with a 13-5 run spanning the first 4:53 of the opening half as Dovonou put in five points and Roper added a layup and a three-pointer. North Greenville clawed back into the game, cutting the lead to 13-12 behind a three-pointer by Luke Lattimer after baskets by Harrison and Vitko. Brevard again went on a pair of runs, going up 21-13 at the 10:35 mark and 41-31 with 4:37 to play.
The Crusaders brought the game back to within five at 45-40 with 1:14 left in the first half behind a pair of free throws by Jamaal Pryor, but Brevard would go into the locker room after three-pointers by Whitmire and Shane Galloway with the 11-point advantage at 51-40.
The lead was extended to 16 in the second half as Drew Schauss pulled down the offensive rebound and went back up to put the score at 71-55 with 12:27 to play. North Greenville brought the game back within single digits with 8:08 left on the clock as Vitko poured in 11 of the Crusaders 14 points during a four minute stretch, connecting on seven of eight from the charity stripe to bring the game back within five at 74-69.
The Tornados would win the game from the free throw line as Dellinger and Tanner combined to hit nine of the Tornados last 11 points from the stripe to give the visitors the win, 97-88.
Brevard is back in action next weekend for their first home game of the season as the Tornados host Limestone College on Saturday, November 28th. Tipoff between Brevard and Limestone is set for 4 p.m. in Boshamer Gymnasium.