Lexington, Ky. – The Transylvania men's basketball team completed a thrilling rally in the final minute of play to seize a 75-74 victory against the DePauw University Tigers on Wednesday afternoon in the consolation contest of the 2019 Don Lane Classic presented by Toyota on Nicholasville Superstore, delivering Transylvania head coach Brian Lane his 300th career head-coaching victory.
The win certified a monumental achievement for Lane, who has now amassed 300 career victories, all with Transylvania.
Lane is just the second coach in the over 100-year history of Transylvania men's basketball to reach the 300-career win mark, following in the footsteps of his father, coach Don Lane, the namesake of this week's annual holiday tournament.
The younger Lane claimed his latest career milestone in front of multiple friends and family which included his predecessor, the elder Lane who handed the reins as head coach to in 2001.
Four different Pioneers reached double figures on the afternoon as Zach Larimore delivered the final go-ahead bucket on the way to a 19-point outing. Trailing by four points just moments before, Larimore broke free on an inbound pass to put the Pioneers ahead for the final one-point margin.
Led by a game-high 22 points from Lucas Gentry, the Pioneers enjoyed a strong offensive performance on Wednesday, including shooting clips of 52 percent from the field and 92 percent from the free-throw line, both significant improvements from Tuesday's loss to Marietta in the opening game of the Don Lane Classic.
The contest was a back-and-forth affair which witnessed both sides struggling to take control of the game and create any sizeable separation. The game featured nine ties and 12 combined lead changes.
After the Tigers took a 43-42 lead at the 15:51 mark of the second half, the Pioneers responded when Larimore knocked down his lone three-point basket of the game, giving Transylvania a 45-43 lead.
Moments later, Gentry drilled his third 3-pointer of the afternoon to knot up the score at 50-50. After falling behind once again, the resilient Pioneers tied the game at 55-55 on a corner three-pointer via Spencer McKinney.
Trailing the Tigers 74-71 with just 19 seconds remaining in the game, Jefferson knifed his way into the lane for a quick score along with a drawn foul to bring the Pioneers within a point.
After a missed Jefferson free-throw, McKinney came up with a clutch steal to give the Pioneers the ball under the Transylvania basket. On the ensuing inbound, Larimore slipped behind the Tiger defense for a layup to put Transylvania ahead, 75-74 with just 14 seconds remaining in the game.
DePauw mounted one last offensive salvo, but the Tigers' driving layup attempt was no good and Jefferson grabbed the rebound to secure the Transylvania victory.
With the win, the Pioneers improve to 6-3 on the season, while the Tigers' record falls to 3-6 overall.
The Pioneers will be back in action on Monday, December 30, as they travel to Danville, Kentucky to face the rival Centre College Colonels. Transylvania will look to avenge a 58-57 loss to the Colonels in Lexington earlier this season.
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