ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) — Nate Johnson and Jose Perez had 20 points apiece as Gardner-Webb won its second game of the season, beating UNC Wilmington 81-72 in the Battle of the Blue Ridge on Saturday night.
Johnson nailed five from long range, making 7 of 9 from the floor. Perez hit three from distance on 7-of-16 shooting. David Efianayi also made three from beyond the arc to total 17 points and Jaheam Cornwall finished with 12 points for Gardner-Webb (2-4) which got off to a slow start but took a 42-27 lead into the break.
The Seahawks rallied in the second half, cutting the lead to 60-52 with 5:56 remaining after Kai Toews made four straight free throws. They cut it to 68-62 after Ty Gadsden completed a 3-point play and Jeantal Cylla drove for a layup with 2:34 left. Nat Johnson answered with a trey and the Bulldogs held on for the win.
Cylla finished with 22 points for UNC Wilmington (2-4).