Belmont Abbey freshman guard Nick Hough led three Crusaders in double figures with a career-high 16 points, but Barton's fast start was too much as the Bulldogs earned an 86-64 victory this evening inside the Wheeler Center in the Conference Carolinas opener for both teams. Barton improves to 2-1 overall and 1-0 in the league, while the Abbey drops to 0-3 overall and 0-1 in Conference Carolinas.
The Crusaders trailed 47-23 at the half but they outscored the Bulldogs 41-39 in the final 20 minutes.
Barton never trailed as it moved ahead by as much as 22 points in the first half as it shot 43 percent from the floor and held the Crusaders to a 23 percent output.
In the second half the Crusaders offense came alive, shooting a season-best 57 percent from the field as Ray Chen scored 12 of his 14 points in the final 40 minutes. Chen played all but 15 seconds in the game.
Hough led the way with 16 points, Chen added 14 and Markel Pollard chipped in with 13 and seven rebounds. Belmont Abbey shot 40 percent for the game and made 18 of 27 from the free throw line.