Vaughn knocked down 10-of-15 shots from the field, including three-of-five from beyond the arc. He also hit five-of-five free throws during his career night. Sophomore forward Quan Alexander (Charlotte, N.C.) added a double-double with 19 points and a career-high 10 rebounds. Freshmen forwards Robert Carpenter (Fayetteville, N.C.) and Jeffrey Parker (Madison, N.C.) contributed 11 points each, while sophomore guard Eddie Lewis (Rocky Point, N.C.) recorded 10 points.
Junior guard Derek Staton (Norfolk, Va.) led the Trojans with 22 points, while senior guard Brandon Allen (Woodbridge, Va.) added 20 points for the Trojans. Freshman guard Ewon Wright (Fayetteville, N.C.) had 16 points, while freshman guard Dory Hines (Kinston, N.C.) had 12 points, 14 rebounds and nine assists.
A jumper from Allen gave the Trojans a 12-9 lead five minutes into the game. Wingate answered with threes from Carpenter and freshman guard Nick Ross (Carrollton, Texas) to take a three-point lead two minutes later. Staton drained a three at the 11:09 mark to tie the game at 20. The ‘Dogs scored the next 10 points to take a 30-20 advantage. Ross got the spurt started with a three, while Alexander capped it with a three-point play.
A lay-up from sophomore forward Deshaune Green (Portsmouth, Va.) cut Wingate’s lead to 32-28 with four minutes remaining in the half. A Vaughn lay-up, followed by a three-point play from sophomore guard Ethan Kincaid (Morganton, N.C.), pushed the Wingate lead back to nine. Mount Olive responded by closing the half on a 14-5 run to tie the game 42-42 at halftime. A pair of Allen free throws, along with a triple from Allen made it a one-point game at the one-minute mark. Ross knocked down a jumper to put Wingate on top by three, but Wright nailed a triple seven seconds before intermission to tie the contest at 42.
The Bulldogs scored the first seven points of the second half, taking a 49-42 lead on a jumper from Vaughn 2:14 into the half. The Trojans battled back, trimming the deficit to one when a jumper from Staton made it 59-58 at the 11:15 mark.
Wingate used an 8-0 run to take a 69-59 lead with 8:56 remaining. Vaughn sparked the flurry with a three-point play and a three-point field goal, while Carpenter capped it with a layup. An Allen three-point play trimmed the lead to seven. The ‘Dogs used another 8-0 run to push the lead to 15. Lewis started the spurt with a trifecta, while Vaughn added another triple in the flurry. Lewis knocked down a pair of free throws and a lay-up to make it 85-68 at the 3:22 mark.
The Trojans would not go away, going on a 12-2 run to cut the lead to seven with 46 seconds to go, capped by a jumper from Wright. Vaughn and Alexander knocked down four free throws to push the lead back to 12 with 38 seconds to go. Staton and freshman guard Nick Lee (Beaulaville, N.C.) converted a pair of threes in the final 10 seconds to cut the final deficit to six.
Wingate topped the 90-point mark for the second time in the 2010 season, while shooting over 50 percent for the third time. The ‘Dogs shot 53.3 percent from the field, while draining eight-of-17 shots from three-point range (47.1 percent). Mount Olive shot 48.4 percent from the field, while hitting 10-of-22 shots from beyond the arc (45.5 percent). The Bulldogs held a 36-33 rebounding advantage and converted eight Mount Olive turnovers into 16 points. Wingate committed a season-low 11 turnovers on the night.
The Bulldogs return to action Thursday, Dec. 30, traveling to Belmont Abbey College. Wingate returns home Jan. 8, 2011, hosting South Atlantic Conference foe Tusculum College at 4 p.m. Mount Olive is back in action Thursday, taking on Virginia Union University at 5:30 p.m.
(Wingate University assistant sports information director Hugh Patton wrote this article. Patton is a 2006 Wingate graduate with a B.A. degree in Communication Studies.)