MARS HILL, N.C. — Heading into halftime, Jabrie Bullard had two points and was 1-2 from the field.
As the final buzzer sounded, he would walk off the court with a career-high 17 points after a 15-point barrage in the second half lifted the Wolves past Mars Hill 99-93.
Bullard would knock down five treys in the second stanza including three within the span of 90 seconds that closed out a 9-3 Newberry run to help the Wolves pull away 85-74 with 6:44 remaining on the clock.
Mars Hill would go on a 16-10 run over the ensuing five minutes to slash the deficit to five with 18 ticks left in the game. Four free throws from James Stepp increased Newberry’s lead back to six with seven seconds to secure a critical conference road win.
Six Wolves – Marshall Lange, Rob Valentine, Nick Dietrich, Max Miller, Luke Gibson and Bullard – each tallying double figures in the victory. Miller helped limit the Lions to one-shot possessions with a team-high nine rebounds.
Both teams started the contest in a back-and-forth battle with Mars Hill taking the 7-4 advantage in the opening minutes. Newberry would retaliate with a 13-0 run highlighted with a trio of treys from Gibson, Valentine and Dietrich to make it 17-7. A three-pointer from Stepp gave Newberry a 22-point lead with 5:59 left in the first, but the Lions would go on a double-digit streak to make it a 12-point game going into intermission 52-40.
Newberry would create 18 points off of 10 turnovers with Bullard notching a team-high three steals.
The Wolves limited Mars Hill to one-shot possessions with the Lions mustering only eight offensive rebounds on the night. Newberry outrebounded Mars Hill 41-31 with the advantage favoring the Wolves offensively and defensively.
Offensive struggles in the second half allowed the Lions to mount a comeback with fast break layup from Luke Van-Rijn cutting the lead to three, 69-66, with 10 minutes remaining. Both teams kept it close in the continuing minutes until Bullard’s aerial assault propelled the Wolves to the win.
The Lions outscored Newberry 53-47 in the second half and outshot them from both the field and three-point range.