LAKELAND, Fla.—Senior Linwood Ross was nearly unstoppable in Southeastern’s 95-83 win over NCAA Division III Franklin College on Tuesday night.
Ross came off the bench and provided a 30-point spark for an offense that struggled to get going.
With the game tied at 12 with 14:25 left in the first half, Ross scored nine of the team’s next 11 points to put the Fire up 23-20 with 11:09 left in the half.
In the first half, he was 6-of-9 from the field with the rest of the team 10-of-28 (35.7%) to put SEU up 46-39 at the break.
Ross went off for 16 more points in the second half in 16 minutes.
“Linwood was ready to play offensively and defensively and just made plays down the stretch,” said coach R-Jay Barsh. “In our first four games, we’ve had two different guys score 30. He’s embraced playing that power forward/center position at 6-5 and can get to the rim and is extremely athletic.”
Shortly after checking in during the second half, Ross converted on a layup, then had a steal on the next possession that transitioned into a one-handed slam at the other end to get the advantage back to six. Ross had three more dunks in the half to excite the crowd.
“I knew I could get to the bucket with my athleticism,” said Ross. “Playing the post is new for me, but I learned how to use my body and score down there.”
Josiah Barsh added 19 points, five assists, and three steals, and was 12-of-13 at the free throw line. Ismael Celestin added 17 points and six assists and Jeremy Oppenheimer chipped in 13 points, four rebounds, three assists, and two steals.
“(Franklin) got out in transition and can really shoot the ball,” said Barsh. “The adjustments we made were just personnel and getting to the rim so we can get to the free throw line.”
The Fire converted at the free throw line, going 29-of-32 for 90%.
Southeastern returns to action on Saturday at the NAIA Division II Showcase in Kingsport, Tenn.