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Basketball (M)

Jernigan and Petty bomb away in Men's Basketball win at PC

SALISBURY, NC -- Catawba College overcame a poor start, then got six three pointers apiece from Kevin Petty (Sanford, NC) and Britt Jernigan (Albemarle, NC) to defeat host Presbyterian 73-68 in in South Atlantic Conference men's basketball action on Wednesday night at Templeton Center. With the win, Catawba secures the third seed for the league tournament and improves to 19-6 overall and 9-4 in the SAC. Presbyterian falls to 10-15 and 3-10, dropping its seventh straight contest against Catawba. The two teams will face again on Tuesday, Feb. 26, in the opening round of the SAC Tournament in Salisbury, NC. Catawba has ended the Blue Hose's season the last three years with tournament losses. The Indians struggled with their shooting touch in the early going and fell behind 17-6 after 12 minutes. Down 24-14, the Tribe used an 11-0 run to grab a 25-24 lead with 1:25 left in the half. Petty had two threes and Jernigan another in the run. Presbyterian did take a 28-25 lead at the break. Catawba shot just 26.5% (9- of-34) in the opening half, going 5-of-20 from long range. The Blue Hose scored the opening four points of the second half to lead 32-25 and held a 36-30 edge with 15 minutes to play. Petty answered with a three-pointer and Brian Carter (Alexandria, VA) was fould on a dunk, tying the score at 36-36 after his free throw. A Jernigan three would give the Tribe a 39-38 lead with 13:23 to play. Jernigan's sixth three of the night put the Tribe ahead at 47-45 and Petty followed with a three-pointer to give Catawba the lead for good at 50-47 with 8:07 left. The Indians stretched their advantage to 11 points at 67-57 with a minute remaining before the Blue Hose reduced the margin to five at the buzzer. Petty led Catawba with 19 points, while Jernigan scored a career-high 18 points. Jernigan also set a mark with six three pointers, while Petty hit six in a game for the third time in his career. After struggling in the opening half, the Tribe sizzled in the second, making 15-of-24 shots (62.5%) and was 7-of-13 from behind the arc. Chuck Rayford scored 20 points in a losing effort for the Blue Hose, while Rod Isom added 15. #######

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