WEST LONG BRANCH, N.J. – Senior guard Lamont Middleton scored a career-high 33 points to lift the North Carolina A&T men’s basketball team to an 85-78 victory over Longwood, Friday evening at the Barclays Center Classic.
The Aggies (2-4) snapped a four-game losing streak as Longwood fell to 2-5 overall.
Middleton knocked down five 3-pointers and was 6-for-16 from the field. Middleton made his way to the free throw line 20 times where he made 16. He also tallied a game-high four steals.
Seniors Richaud Pack and Jeremy Underwood also pitched in as Pack finished with 22 points off the bench for A&T and Underwood recorded 11. Freshman Jerome Simmons led the Aggies defensively with eight rebounds and sophomore Bruce Beckford tallied seven.
After tying the game at 35 going into the locker room at the half, the Aggies unleashed a 14-4 run to open the next 20 minutes, which was capped off with a dunk by Simmons to give A&Ta 49-39 lead at the 16:05 mark.
A&T remained ahead and took its largest advantage of the game, 68-50, with a pair of free throws from Middleton with just under nine minutes to play in the game. But Longwood found its way back into the game with a 17-6 run which produced three 3-pointers to cut the Aggies lead to 77-69 with 4:18 left.
Longwood continued to apply pressure and got within six at 79-73 with 2:12 remaining. The Aggies regained control to close out the game. A&T shot 57.1 percent from the field in the second half. The Aggies also capitalized on their trips to the free throw line where they were 38-for-39.
Tristan Carey led Longwood with 20 points and hit four of the team’s seven 3-pointers, Lucas Woodhouse scored 19 and Karl Ziegler added 17.
A&T will face the winner of the Monmouth/Mississippi Valley State game on Saturday, Nov .30 at 7:05 p.m., in the final game of the Barclays Center Classic.