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The Eastern Kentucky University men’s basketball team had an extended break after a game against Bryant on Dec. 22 was canceled due to health and safety protocols - and it showed early against Alice Lloyd on Friday.

The Eagles jumped out to a 17-4 lead at the 12:26 mark of the first half, but Jomaru Brown led a rapid comeback as the Colonels exploded for 22 consecutive points over the next 4:19. Brown capped off the first half with 16 points. EKU ended the half on a 41-10 run to lead, 48-26.

The Colonels continued to roll in the second half to earn a 106-52 win over Alice Lloyd at McBrayer Arena. EKU improves to 8-6 on the season.

EKU held the Eagles to just four made field goals over the final 12 minutes of the first half and forced 17 first-half turnovers.

“I thought our press was tremendous,” EKU coach A.W. Hamilton said. “It is one of those things that at some point you're going to break them down and they start the game off they're making some tough shots and they get some open threes and sometimes when you press you give up those shots… This is a good team win for us.”

EKU continued to stretch its lead in the second half as the Colonels shot 58% from the floor in the second half. The Colonels shared the ball which allowed 10 different Colonels to score, including five players posting double-digit points.

Devontae Blanton scored a career-high 29 points and added 13 rebounds and two assists. DaShawn Jackson also recorded a career-high in scoring with 15 points to go along with four rebounds and two steals.

The Colonels were short-handed on Friday, playing without Braxton Beverly, Jannson Williams and Curt Lewis due to medical reasons.

“We're going through a lot of adversity right now,” Hamilton said. “We've got three guys who are medically scratched right now so DJ (DaShawn Jackson) had to be ready to play today. I thought he played really well. Coming into the game he’s 2-for-17 from the three and I told him it doesn't matter, we know you can make shots.”

Hamilton said Jackson also impacted the game on the defensive end because of his athleticism.

“He's so big and strong that he can be a difference-maker on the defensive end for us,” Hamilton said.

Michael Wardy finished the night with 13 points and six rebounds. Cooper Robb netted 13 points, four rebounds and three assists and three steals. Michael Moreno finished with a team-high five steals.

Jomaru Brown scored 16 points and led the Colonels with eight assists. Brown also totaled four steals. Brown has moved into seventh place all-time in steals in EKU history.

“Ru (Brown) has practiced really well,” Hamilton said. “He knows he has to be a more efficient basketball player. This is totally different than where we were two years ago when Jomaru had to score, score, score. We have more players now.”

Eastern Kentucky forced the Eagles into 30 turnovers while committing just 11 of their own. The Colonels turned those 30 turnovers into 42 points and held a 48-26 advantage in points in the paint.

EKU tips off ASUN play on Tuesday, when the Colonels welcome Central Arkansas to Richmond at 7 p.m.

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