BARBOURVILLE, Ky. - Brescia's (Ky.) Kyle Nixon scored a game-high 19 points, as the Bearcats outscored the Union Men's Basketball team by 11 points in the second half, on their way to an 82-72 win in NAIA action on Monday evening at Robsion Arena.
The game was the 2012-13 season opener for the Bulldogs, as well as the UC debut of head coach Kevin Burton. With the result, UC fell to 0-1 on the season, while Brescia improved to 1-1 overall.
It was a defensive first half of play, as Union held a slim 29-28 lead after the first 20 minutes. The Bulldogs began the half well, opening an 11 point lead at the 15 minute mark (15-4) after a pair of Tarik Smith free throws. However, the Bearcats gradually began chipping at the lead, eventually tying things up at 21-all with five minutes left in the half.
After an even first half, things started the exact same may to start the second half. With 15 minutes left, the game was tied for the fifth time after an Archie Adams lay-in made the score 38-38. From there, Brescia dominated, rolling on a 13-2 run to open a 51-40 lead with 11 minutes left.
The closest Union came the rest of the night to lead was at four points (59-55) after a Tarik Smith three with 6:31 left, but Brescia put the game away with another big run (10-4) over the next few minutes to open up a double-digit lead at 69-59 with four minutes left.
The lead was too much for the Bulldogs to come back from, as the Bearcats coasted down the stretch to record a 10-point win on the road. Overall in the period, Brescia outscored UC 54-43, and shot 63 percent from the floor on their way to the win.
Union's top scorer on the night was Tarik Smith, with 18 points, while Josh Smith added 17 points, pulling down eight rebounds, while dishing out three assists. Adams rounded out the double-digit scorers for UC, recording a double-double with 14 points and 17 rebounds.
For Brescia, Nixon led six players who scored in double-digits on the evening for the Bearcats with his 19-point night.
The Bulldogs return to action on Friday, hosting the 2012 Bulldog Classic. UC will take on Cincinnati Christian (Ohio) in their first game of the weekend, with tipoff set for 4 p.m.