UNC-Asheville holds off VMI 89-86

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ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) -- Matt Dickey scored 26 points and grabbed seven rebounds in UNC-Asheville's 89-86 win over Virginia Military Institute on Thursday night.

Dickey was 6 of 10 from the field and sank 11 free throws.

UNC-Asheville (17-7, 12-1 Big South Conference) took its first lead of the game, 18-15, behind a three-point play by Dickey and pushed that lead to 50-39 at halftime. However, VMI opened the second half on a 21-7 run to take a 60-57 lead 14:06 left to play.

The Bulldogs rallied to tie it at 78-all and regained the lead, 82-79, behind two Jeremy Atkinson jumpers. Dickey's two free throws put UNC-Asheville ahead 88-84 with 28 seconds left.

The Keydets (11-10, 6-5) cut the deficit to 88-86 and got the ball back with 17 seconds left. But Michael Sparks missed two free throws, and Stan Okoye missed a jumper and then a layup after grabbing the offensive rebound.