OWENSBORO, KY -- Kyle Upton led a trio of Bulldogs in double digits with 18 points, but Cumberland University came up empty against Kentucky Wesleyan Tuesday night as the home team built a large halftime lead and cruised to an 86-65 victory.
Graciano Negron and Lindal Yarbrough added 14 and 13 points, respectively for Coach Lonnie Thompson's 3-6 CU squad.
Cumberland has lost all six of its games away from the Dallas Floyd Recreation Center, where the Bulldogs are a perfect 3-for-3 this season.
CU kept pace with the 11th-ranked NCAA Division II team early on, taking its last lead of the game at 12-11 on a pair of Lindal Yarbrough free throws five minutes into the contest. A short drought left the Bulldogs looking up for the rest of the night as Kentucky Wesleyan (6-1) went on a 16-4 run over the next six minutes.
The Bulldogs responded with a short spurt that brought them within three points, scoring eight of the next nine. The stretch ended with a 3-pointer from Trey Caruthers.
Cumberland would only manage two more points in the final 6:37 of the opening half as KWC built a 40-26 lead at the break.
In the second half, CU couldn’t get any closer than 13 points as the Panthers stretched their advantage to as many as 24 points.
The Bulldogs made six 3-pointers, including two apiece from Haris Batalevic and Negron. Cumberland shot just 45.7 percent, while KWC connected on 63 percent of its attempts from the floor.
Cumberland will break for the holidays and return to action in the College of the Ozarks Classic January 3-4 in Point Lookout, Mo. The Bulldogs next home contest will also mark the beginning of conference play as CU hosts Lyon College on January 6.