Gold Rush win streak ends after late Dillard rally

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NEW ORLEANS — Kristopher Allmon made two 3-pointers in the final 6 1/2 minutes Saturday, including a tiebreaking trey with 1:36 remaining, to rally Dillard to a 70-69 Gulf Coast Athletic Conference men’s basketball victory against Xavier University of Louisiana at Dillard’s Dent Hall.

The Bleu Devils (11-8, 2-2) trailed 58-53 after Jalen David’s basket for XULA with 6:50 remaining, then scored on seven consecutive possessions — including five second-chance points — to snap the eight-game win streak of the Gold Rush (14-5, 3-1).

Allmon’s final 3-pointer gave Dillard a 70-67 lead with 1:36 remaining. Elex Carter’s tip-in with 49 seconds remaining made it 70-69, but teammate Virgil Davison missed a 2-pointer from the left side as time expired.

Neither team led by more than three points in the final 5:16.

Leading XULA were Davison with 19 points, including 5-of-8 3-pointers, Jeff Dixon with 17 points and six assists, Jalen David wirh 15 points and Carter with three blocked shots.

Joshua Simmons had 17 points and 16 rebounds, and Quinton Jackson had 16 points and nine assists for Dillard. Allmon scored 13, and Jorori Coleman had 12.

All five Dillard starters — Allmon, Simmons, Jackson, Coleman and Patrick Thompson — played the entire second half. After trailing by 14 late in the first half and 32-24 at halftime, Dillard improved all three of its team shooting percentages in the second half. For the game the Bleu Devils outrebounded the Gold Rush 51-32.

“We didn’t do a good job shooting free throws (6-of-14) and keeping Dillard off the offensive boards (17),” XULA coach Alfred Williams said. “I could talk about other factors, but those were the keys. We had our chances.”

Dillard outscored XULA 15-4 in second-chance points.

XULA led for more than 35 minutes. It never led again after Jackson’s basket made it 65-64 at 3:13, but Carter tied the score twice thereafter — at 65 when he made 1-of-2 free throws at 2:56 and at 67 on a putback at 1:59. His basket followed four missed shots during that possession.

For the game XULA outshot Dillard 45 to 39.1 percent from the floor. The Bleu Devils made twice as many free throws, finishing at 12-of-24 after a 1-of-7 start. Both teams committed fewer than 10 turnovers, with XULA recording a season-low seven.

The victory was Dillard’s fifth in a row against XULA and its longest win streak against its longtime GCAC and city rival since winning eight straight from 1998-2001. (XULA’s longest streak in the series is 19.) The teams will meet again Feb. 17 — four days after Mardi Gras — at XULA’s Convocation Center.

XULA dropped to second place in the GCAC, a half-game behind Talladega (13-6, 4-1), which won 59-45 at Edward Waters.

Next for the Gold Rush will be a fifth consecutive GCAC road game at 7:30 p.m. Monday against Philander Smith (7-8, 2-2) at Little Rock, Ark. The next Gold Rush home game will start at 7 p.m. Wednesday against city rival Loyola.

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