On a night when Drexel’s shooting touch deserted them and they trailed most of the game, they clawed to within a point in the final seconds before falling to James Madison, 71-69, on Thursday, in Harrisonburg, Va.
Down 69-61 with 54 seconds remaining, junior forward Alihan Demir made a layup and two free throws, and Camren Wynter hit a three-pointer to make it a 69-68 game with 10 seconds left. But that was the end of the rally for the Dragons, who shot 38.2 percent, compared to the Dukes’ 56.6 percent.
Demir led all scorers with 23 points, and sophomore forward James Butler added 14 points and 12 rebounds for Drexel (12-15, 6-8 in the Colonial Athletic Association).
Sophomore forward Dwight Wilson led James Madison with 20 points. The Dukes (11-16, 4-9) had lost six of their previous seven games.
Tied, 20-20, about midway through the first half, James Madison went on a 17-2 run, before Drexel whittled the deficit to 37-28 at the intermission.
Drexel trailed by nine to 13 points the entire second half, until Demir’s layup drew the Dragons to within six points with 35 seconds left.