Sharkey’s double-double, key free throws lead Samford by VMI

LEXINGTON, Va. (AP) — Josh Sharkey had 25 points and 10 assists as Samford edged VMI 78-75 on Saturday.

Donte Tatum had 16 points and six rebounds for Samford (8-8, 2-0 Southern Conference). Robert Allen added 11 points. Deandre Thomas had 10 points for the Bulldogs.

Samford trailed 40-37 at halftime and 47-41 with 14:57 remaining in the second half. The Bulldogs took the lead for good at 54-53 and quickly pushed their advantage to nine points on a jumper by Sharkey and back-to-back 3-pointers by Tatum and Allen. The lead reached 67-53 on another 3-pointer by Allen.

Samford led 75-67 on a free throw by Sharkey with 1:28 to go before VMI’s Garrett Gilkeson hit a 3-pointer and Travis Evee made two free throws and a 3-pointer, cutting the Keydets’ deficit to 76-75 with five seconds left. Gilkeson then fouled Sharkey, who made both free throws for the final margin.

Evee had 24 points for the Keydets (5-11, 0-3), who have lost four consecutive games. Gilkeson scored a career-high 22 points and had 10 rebounds. Kamdyn Curfman had six rebounds.

Samford plays Wofford at home on Wednesday. VMI plays Western Carolina at home on Wednesday.