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Basketball (M)

Men's Basketball Grabs Another One-Point Win

HICKORY, NC -- Catawba rallied from a four-point deficit in the final two minutes to grab a 79-78 win over Mount Olive in men’s basketball action at the Moretz Sports Classic at Lenoir-Rhyne’s Shuford Gym.  The win lifts the Catawba Indians to 6-4, while the Trojans fall to 5-3.

The Indians trailed 76-72, but Isaac Rose (Jonesville, NC/W. Forsyth HS) and Antonio Houston (Charlotte, NC/E. Mecklenburg HS) scored to tie the game with 54 seconds to play.  Donald Rutherford (Morganton, NC/Freedom HS) came up with a steal and converted a free throw with 37 seconds left to put the Tribe up 77-76.

After a missed shot by Mount Olive, Dominick Reid (Charlotte, NC/Cannon School) converted two free throws with 14 seconds remaining for a 79-76 lead.  Aking Elting cut the margin to 79-78 with seven seconds remaining and the Trojans had a final chance after Jason Diggs (Christiansburg, VA/Christiansburg HS) missed two free throws, but Brandon Streeter’s desperation shot was off the mark at the buzzer.

Catawba led for much of the first half despite shooting just 38%.  The Indians held several eight-point advantages, the last at 25-17 with 7:28 to go.  Mount Olive would fight back to go up 38-37 at the break.

The Indians took the lead back in the opening minute of the second half on a three-pointer by Rob Fields (Orangeburg, SC/Orangeburg-Wilkerson HS).  Catawba would fire in 58% of its shots in the final half, including a 5-for-6 performance from behind the arc.  The teams traded the lead several times in the last half before the Trojans used a 8-2 run to grab a 74-69 lead with 4:32 to go and setting the stage for the Catawba rally.

Houston led Catawba with 20 points and dished out six assists.  Reid added a career-high 19 points, hitting all four of his three-point attempts, and also pulled down seven rebounds.  Fields also reached double figures with 16 points.  Streeter had 17 points and nine rebounds for Mount Olive, while Lydell Walker followed with 15 points.

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