SCOTT MANDZIARA | Sports Editor
Lindenwood had a chance to defeat Division I opponent Marquette University when Jackson Price shot a 3-pointer as time expired, the ball hit the rim and nearly went in, and Marquette escaped with a 81-79 win.
The Lions returned four starters from last years 21-win team including their top three leading scorers, Chandler Diekvoss, Jackson Price and Dominique Dobbs.
Lindenwood took its first lead of the game 11-9 with 14:57 to go in the first half after a 3-pointer from freshman guard T.J. Crockett.
Once the Lions took the lead, they wouldn’t give it back. Lindenwood led for the duration of the half behind Crockett’s nine points in the half. It wasn’t a one-man show, as the team shot a combined 61.5 percent from the field (16-26) and 62.5 percent from behind the 3-point line (10-16).
At the half, the Lions led 42-37. Marquette made the NCAA tournament last year and fell to South Carolina in the first round. South Carolina made it all the way to the final four.
“We had the same mindset that we had at the beginning of the game: We’re going to win it.” Price said.
According to SB Nation’s Anonymous Eagle, the line was Marquette by 34.5 and had a 99 percent chance to defeat Lindenwood.
The 3-point shot would keep falling for Lindenwood as six of the team’s first eight points of the second half came from 3s by Price and Diekvoss.
Unfortunately for the Lions, they went scoreless for 3:20 in the second half (15:30-12:10), giving the Golden Eagles a chance to come back.
“They got after us defensively,” Price said. “We turned the ball over and we struggled to execute offense.”
Lindenwood held the lead all the way up until 9:17 seconds were left in the game, when guard Sacar Anim made a layup to give Marquette a 62-61 lead.
Marquette would extend the lead all the way up to eight points with 5:09 to play.
Lindenwood guard Brad Newman then went on a scoring frenzy. Newman hit a jumper to cut the lead to five, then a few possessions later hit a 3-pointer to bring the Lions within two, and then hit another jump shot. Marquette’s offense would stay hot as they kept trying to pull away, but with 1:02 left in the game Newman hit a 3-pointer to bring the game back within two, 79-77, according to Lindenwood Athletics.
With under 10 seconds to play, Newman missed a 3-pointer, Crockett got the rebound and tipped the ball in to make it 81-79 with one second remaining. After a timeout, the Golden Eagles tried to inbound the ball and Price tipped the ball off of a Marquette player out of bounds to retain the ball for Lindenwood.
“I was the second option,” Price said. “I got open and let it fly.”
Price missed the buzzer-beater 3-point shot and Lindenwood fell to Marquette 81-79 in the exhibition game.
Newman led Lindenwood in scoring with 19 points, shooting 7-12 from the field and 4-6 from behind the arc.
Coming up this weekend, Lindenwood opens the regular season on the road in the MIAA/NSIC classic against Bemidji State at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 10.