- Associated Press - Monday, February 27, 2017

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Garrison Mathews scored 30 points on 11-for-15 shooting and second-seeded Lipscomb walloped NJIT 97-66 in the opening round of the Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament on Monday night, winning its first home playoff game since 2009.

Lipscomb (20-12) advances to the A-Sun semifinals, playing host to third-seeded North Florida (14-18).

The Bisons, who shot 61 percent (38 of 62) knocked down 12 straight shots to jump out to an early 29-7 lead and led 50-31 by halftime. Garrison, named first-team all-conference as a sophomore, scored 18 in the first half. He made 4 of 6 3-point shots and added five assists.

Rob Marberry and Eli Pepper, also sophomores, scored 14 each for Lipscomb. The Bisons scored 29 points off 19 NJIT turnovers and had 21 assists on 38 field goals.

Anthony Tarke scored 21 to lead NJIT, which finishes 11-20. The Highlanders are 0-2 in A-Sun playoffs, upset as a No. 2 seed last season in their first appearance.

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