Basketball (M)

Turnovers lead to loss in SAC-opener for Men's Basketball

HICKORY, N.C. -- Catawba College suffered 23 turnovers and dropped its South Atlantic Conference menís basketball opener to host Lenoir-Rhyne 87-66 on Saturday night at Shuford Gym. The Indians fall to 9-5 with their second straight defeat, while Lenoir-Rhyne improves to 7-6. Catawba strayed close early and enjoyed leads in the first 10 minutes, the last at 18-17 after a layin by Rokus Bartasius (Kaunus, LITHUANIA) with 9:58 to go in the opening frame. A three-pointer by freshman Jamel Hamilton (Virginia Beach, Va.) left the Tribe down 23-21 at the 7:57 mark, but the Bears closed the half on a 14-7 run to take a 37-28 lead at the break. A three-point play by Jolly Manning (Rocky Mount, N.C.) left the Indians behind 40-31 when a four-point play by Bear Tony Connelly sparked a 12-0 L-R run that put Catawba in a big hole with 14:08 remaining and a 52-31 deficit. A layup by Hamilton to stop the run would be the last time Catawba would reduce the margin to under 20 points the rest of the way. Senior forward Roman Davis' (Greensboro, N.C.) led the Bears with 24 points. Connelly (Charlotte, N.C.) followed with 20 points and added five steals and four assists, while Stephen Hinds (Winston-Salem, N.C.) tallied 17 points to go along with nine rebounds and five assists, both game-highs. Brian Graves (Newport News, Va.) was the Indians' top scorer with 17 points and Hamilton (Virginia Beach, Va.) chipped in with 15 for Catawba. Lenoir-Rhyne scorched the nets from the field, hitting on 54% (29-of-54), while Catawba connected on just 41% (25-of-61). #####

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