QUINCY, Mass.- Rookie Justin Wagner (Oklahoma City, Okla.) set a new career-high with 20 points to fuel the Eastern Nazarene men's basketball team to an 89-76 non-conference victory over Daniel Webster Thursday evening at the Lahue Physical Education Center.
The Lions improve to 6-2 on the year with a 4-0 mark in their home arena. The Eagles sink to 4-6 overall with the result.
Justin Wagner led four Eastern Nazarene players with double-digit points on the night as he hit five three-pointers and added five points from the charity stripe. Jaylen Owens (Johns Creek, Ga.) netted 13 points and handed out a team-high five assists while Eric Lynch (Alpharetta, Ga.) finished with 11. Chima Ezeigbo (Roanoke, Va.) recorded his second double-double of the season with 12 points and 10 rebounds.
Justin Wagner netted nine points early in the first half, including a pair of treys, to give the hosts a 21-9 lead.
Daniel Webster battled back to pull to within one of the Lions, 21-20, with 9:02 remaining in the opening frame as John Hickson nailed a three-pointer from the left wing.
The Eagles claimed their first lead of the game with eight minutes left as Dave Schindewolf found Rufus Louf cutting to the hoop for an uncontested lay-in.
Eastern Nazarene reclaimed a one-point advantage on a three-pointer by Justin Wagner with 5:05 showing on the clock in the half, 31-30.
The home side headed into the halftime intermission leading 42-37.
Justin Wagner paced the Lions with 12 first-half points on 3-of-3 shooting from beyond the arc. Lynch posted seven points in the opening 20 minutes while Brian Hard (Weymouth, Mass.) and Alex Jarman (Portsmouth, R.I.) each contributed six.
Eastern Nazarene shot 59.3% from the field in the first frame while the visitors sank 46.7% of their shot attempts.
The Lions opened the second stanza with six straight points to grab a 48-37 edge.
Daniel Webster closed the gap to four, 74-70, with 7:03 remaining on a trey by Dave Schindewolf. Daris Cosby converted the first of two free throws to slice the deficit to four later in the half.
Eastern Nazarene closed out the contest on a 12-3 run, capped off by a three by Owens from the left corner with 41 ticks left on the clock.
The Lions shot 49.2% from the field on the evening and 39.3% from long distance. The Eagles knocked down 42.2% of their field-goal attempts in the game while hitting 33.3% of their bids from three-point land.
Eastern Nazarene owned a 50-27 margin in rebounds, including a 15-5 edge in offensive boards.
Up next, the Lions remain at home as they host league foe Gordon January 5 at 3:00 pm.