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Basketball (M)

Houston's 28 Points Not Enough As Men's Basketball Falls to JCSU in OT

SALISBURY, NC -- James Dillard (Apex, NC) scored 35 points and pulled down 16 rebounds to lead Johnson C. Smith to a 110-102 overtime win over host Catawba in men’s basketball action on Wednesday night at Goodman Gym.  The Golden Bulls improve to 8-1, while the Catawba Indians, ranked ninth in NCAA II, fall to 8-2.

The Golden Bulls never trailed in the extra period, taking the lead for good at 95-92 on a three-pointer by Ronald Thornhill (Alberta, VA).  A second three-pointer in the extra session by Thornhill increased the lead to 102-94 with 2:13 remaining.  Catawba closed within six at 108-102 with 31 seconds to play, but could get no closer.

Antonio Houston (Charlotte, NC/E. Mecklenburg HS) led Catawba with a season-high 28 points, with 19 in the opening half.  Six Indians reached double figures with Isaac Rose (Jonesville, NC/W. Forsyth HS) following with 15 points.  Dominick Reid (Charlotte, NC/Cannon School) and Rob Fields (Orangeburg, SC/Orangeburg-Wilkerson HS) each had 14.  Jerry Hollis (Charlotte, NC) followed Dillard with 24 points for JCSU.  James Otey (Roanoke, VA), with 18 points, and Thornhill, with 15, rounded out the double-digit scorers for the Golden Bulls.

Catawba forced the overtime period when Fields canned three free throws with 2.4 seconds remaining in regulation.  JCSU did not trail after going ahead 67-66 on a jumper by Dillard with 8:57 left.  Dillard scored 19 of his game-high 35 points in the second half, including 13 of 17 points in the push that gave JCSU the lead.

Catawba rolled to an early 39-22 lead in the opening 12 and a half minutes, but Dillard and Otey each had seven points in a 14-0 run the trimmed the deficit to 39-36.  Houston kept Catawba in front with two of his five first-half three-pointers in the final 2:23 and went to the break up 49-46.

Both teams shot over 50% for the game with JCSU canning 54.4% (37-of-68) and Catawba 52.9% (37-of-70).  Catawba was 10-of-15, including a perfect 5-for-5 by Houston, from beyond the arc in the opening half, but failed on all 10 tries after the break.

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