by Benny Benton
WILSON, N.C. – The Barton College men's basketball team stormed back from a 16-point second-half deficit to earn a dramatic 92-90 home victory over King University on Saturday that kept the Bulldogs undefeated in Conference Carolinas play.
Junior transfer Bobby Stenborg scored a career-high 28 points to lead Barton (9-6, 5-0), with 16 of those coming in the game's final 10 minutes during the team's big comeback. The Garner, N.C., resident also collected seven rebounds, including the last one with two seconds to play that sealed the win.
Barton grabbed the lead for the final time on a 3-pointer from the left corner by freshman Isaiah Reddish with exactly one minute to play. It was the only points of the second half for the Durham, N.C., resident and the first made 3-pointer of his collegiate career. Reddish finished the game with a career-high 12 points
Reddish's shot turned a one-point deficit into a 91-89 BC lead. King's Jordan Floyd, who produced a stellar 35-point scoring night for the Tornado (9-7, 4-2), tried a pair of 3-point attempts in the final minute, but both missed the mark, the latter with eight seconds remaining.
Stenborg was sent to the foul line and made the second of two attempts with three seconds to play, giving BC a three-point lead. To prevent a potential game-tying 3-pointer, Barton fouled De'Don Young as soon as the ball was in-bounded. Young made the first free throw and intentionally missed the second, but Stenborg came down with the rebound to seal the comeback.
It was the second improbable rally of the game for the Bulldogs. King scored the first eight points of the contest, all by Floyd, and held a 22-8 advantage following a Young 3-pointer with 12:32 to go in the first half.
Reddish sparked the comeback, scoring all nine of his first-half points in a span of less than three and a half minutes, two of them on dunks. Another freshman, Jake Kakar, came off the bench to provide five points during the rally, and Michael Boykin scored four straight to get BC within two.
A 3-pointer by Jeff Gordon got the Bulldogs back to within a point, and Matt Woods completed the comeback with a jumper that gave Barton its first lead of the night, 36-35, with 2:28 left in the half.
The two teams went to intermission with King leading 42-40, but the Tornado started the second half just like it did the first, outscoring Barton 13-4 to open the period, nine of those on a trio of 3-pointers. BC cut that deficit in half, but Floyd scored 20 of King's next 26 points, leading the Tornado to its biggest lead of the night, 16 points, at 75-59 with 10:17 to go.
Floyd, a 6-2 junior guard from Stone Mountain, Ga., was 7-of-14 from 3-point range and 14-of-25 overall in his career-high scoring night.
Timothy Taylor added 18 points and a game-high 10 assists for the Tornado, and Mack Owens chipped in a game-high 13 rebounds.
Boykin scored 19 points for Barton and Matt Woods added 11. Both were key players in the second-half comeback. Isaiah Buck-Lomwan contributed a team-high 11 rebounds.
Barton and rival University of Mount Olive, who entered the day as the last two unbeaten teams in the league, will square off in Wilson Gymnasium on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.