01/27/11 — MOC - Queens men's game

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MOC - Queens men's game

By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on January 27, 2011 1:47 PM

MOUNT OLIVE -- Mount Olive College head coach Joey Higginbotham is not accustomed to losing in his home gym. He's even less conditioned to having his team blown out.

Queens University of Charlotte delivered a 70-41 beating to the Trojans Wednesday evening.

Higginbotham was naturally at a loss for words after the Conference Carolinas contest.

"I was shocked that we didn't come out ready to play tonight," said Higginbotham. "We have the best team in the league in our place, an opportunity for us to make something happen within the conference and we came out with no intensity."

The win elevated Queens to 9-0 in the league standings and 14-4 overall.

The Royals took the lead from the opening tip and built an 11-6 advantage four minutes into the opening half. They made use of their significant height advantage and pushed their lead to double digits with a 7-0 run.

A failed possession by the Trojans at the end of the half allowed Queens guard Preston Newlin to get a fast break. After being fouled on a driving layup, Newlin sank both free throws and Higginbotham was hit with a technical foul for showing his displeasure to the officials.

Reggie Hopkins buried both technical foul shots and the Royals led 39-22 at the break. Queens upped the lead to as many as 31 points in the second half before both coaches found plenty of time for reserves.

"I decided with eight minutes or so to play that I was going to go with the guys that wanted to be in the game and wanted to battle," said Higginbotham. "I don't think those guys did any worse. I hope tonight showed some of our guys that you can't just show up and play when you want."

Little-used backups Nick Lee and Caleb Henderson finished out the game for the Trojans. Henderson provided the Mount Olive highlight of the game with a steal and a dunk in the final minute.

Brandon Allen paced the Trojans with 12 points. Allen was the only Mount Olive player in double figures.

Hopkins led the Royals with 24 points. Daniel Bailey added 12 points and seven rebounds.

Mount Olive (10-7 overall, 5-4 CC) visits Limestone on Saturday.