PEORIA, Ill. – Bradley center Will Egolf apparently does not want his sixth season to end. After scoring a career-best 22 points in the opening-game of the CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament, Egolf turned in a double-double with 20 points and 12 rebounds Saturday night and buried a go-ahead 3-pointer with 1:01 remainining, lifting the Braves (18-16) to a 77-72 win against Tulane (20-15) in the second round of the CIT at Renaissance Coliseum.
Bradley will visit Missouri Valley Conference rival Northern Iowa for a third-round game in the CIT Tuesday night, 7 p.m., at the McLeod Center.
In a game that featured nine ties and 10 lead changes, Bradley overcame a 10-point first-half deficit to force a 45-45 tie at halftime, then rallied from a 6-point deficit, 62-56, with 11:29 remaining.
Egolf started an 11-0 Bradley run to flip that 6-point deficit by scoring in the paint with 10:18 left. He added another interior bucket for a 62-62 tie and Walt Lemon Jr. ultimately capped the run with a pull-up jumper with 6:02 left for a 67-62 lead.
Egolf again pushed the lead to five points, 71-66, with one more paint basket with 4:03 left, but Tulane refused to go away. Kendall Timmons, who scored a game-high 29 points, split two free throws to start a 6-0 Green Wave run that gave the visitors their final lead. Josh Davis made two free throws with 1:13 remaining for a 72-71 Tulane lead.
Bradley called a timeout during Davis’ free throw trip and drew up a play for Egolf’s 3-pointer. The 6-foot-9 center buried the shot from the right wing for a 74-72 lead with 1:01 left.
Bradley’s defense then came up big as the Braves forced a 3-second call in the lane against Tulane guard Ben Cherry. After a barrage of fouls were required to put the Braves into the bonus, Lemon eventually split two free throws for a 75-72 lead with 15 seconds left. Bradley had the perimeter well-covered on the ensuing Tulane possession and Davis ultimately missed a contested free throw line jumper with 5 seconds remaining. Bradley forward Tyshon Pickett then closed the game out by sinking two free throws for the final margin.
In addition to Egolf’s first double-double since his redshirt sophomore season in 2009-10, the Braves got 17 points from Pickett, 13 points from senior guard Dyricus Simms-Edwards and 12 points from Lemon. Reserve Louis Dabney was Tulane’s only other double-digit scorer with 11 points. Though held to nine points on 3-for-10 shooting, Davis ripped down a game-high 17 rebounds for the Green Wave.