- Associated Press - Friday, February 19, 2016

RICHMOND, Ky. (AP) - Craig Bradshaw scored a career-high 33 points on 8-for-16 shooting to lead Belmont to an 86-78 win over Eastern Kentucky on Thursday night.

Evan Bradds added 18 points with 11 rebounds and Nick Smith had 13 points for Belmont, which hit 27 of 59 from the field and had a 44-33 rebounding advantage. Bradshaw was 13 for 16 from the line.

Belmont (19-9, 11-3 Ohio Valley Conference) raced to a 30-8 lead midway through the first half and never trailed. Bradshaw got three of his four 3-pointers during the run.

Eastern Kentucky (14-15, 5-9) chipped away and closed to within a point, 52-51, on JaVontae Hawkins’ jumper with 13:33 left. Belmont responded with a 9-2 burst capped with a pair of free throws from Bradds and hung on the rest of the way.

Nick Mayo, Jarelle Reischel and Hawkins scored 19 points each for the Colonels.

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