March 7, 2009
Men's Basketball Advances To SAC Tournament Final
HICKORY, NC -- Catawba earned its third straight trip to the championship game of the South Atlantic Conference Men’s Basketball Tournament with a 79-68 win over top-seeded Lenoir-Rhyne on Saturday night at the Multipurpose Arena at Catawba Valley Community College. The fourth-seeded Catawba Indians improve to 20-9 overall and will face either second-seeded Newberry or third-seeded Tusculum in the final. Lenoir-Rhyne, who has lost three straight years to Catawba in the tournament semifinals, falls to 18-10.
The Indians trailed by two at the break, but dominated the second half en route to the win. Catawba shot 58% in the second half, outscored the Bears 46-33 and out-rebounded L-R by a 26-8 margin. Dominick Reid (Charlotte, NC/Cannon School), who led Catawba with 23 points, scored 14 of his points in the final half.
Lenoir-Rhyne scored the opening basket of the second half then Catawba reeled off six straight points to take a lead on a jumper by Antonio Houston (Charlotte, NC/E. Mecklenburg HS). When Isaac Rose (Jonesville, NC/W. Forsyth HS) canned a jumper at the 14:51 mark, giving Catawba a 48-46 edge, the Indians never trailed again.
Reid connected on a three-pointer and Donald Rutherford (Morganton, NC/Freedom HS) added a jumper as Catawba pushed out to a 64-56 lead. A seven-point burst increased the margin to a dozen at 73-61 with 4:17 remaining and the Indians were not threatened down the stretch.
Catawba jumped out of the gates and led 17-8 in the opening eight minutes. Lenoir-Rhyne would rally behind Josh Rudder and Marcus Hodges, who scored 11 and 10 points in the opening half, respectively. Rudder gave the Bears a 23-21 lead during a 17-4 spurt that had L-R on top 25-21. The Bears led 35-33 at the break despite shooting just 34% in part thanks to a dozen Catawba turnovers.
Lenoir-Rhyne would shoot just 38% in the loss, while Catawba canned 50%. Catawba pulled down 20 offensive rebounds in its dominating performance on the board, doubling up L-R 50-25 and outscoring the Bears 22-7 in second-chance points.
Houston added 19 points for the Indians, pulled down seven rebounds and dished out four assists. Rutherford posted a double-double with 16 points and 11 rebounds. Hodges had 20 to pace L-R and connected on five three-pointers. Elliott McDowell scored 18 points with Rudder adding 13.
Catawba is making its eighth trip to the SAC Tournament Championship game and is looking for back-to-back titles. Catawba has lost just once in the finals, coming in 2007 to Wingate.
Volleyball vs. MONTEVALLO 3-2
Cross Country in CHICK-FIL-A INVITE W-2nd; M-3rd
Tennis (M) @ Belmont Abbey Individual Tourn.
Volleyball vs. BELMONT ABBEY 1-3
Volleyball vs. CHOWAN 3-0
Soccer (M) vs. ERSKINE 1-2
Soccer (W) @ Barton 2-0
Soccer (M) vs. MOUNT OLIVE 1-3
Soccer (W) vs. LIMESTONE 1-3
Cross Country @ Lenoir-Rhyne Invite W-3rd,M-3rd
Volleyball @ Winston-Salem St. 0-3
Tennis (W) @ Wingate Individual Tourn. (Day 1)
Tennis (M) @ Wingate Individual Tourn. (Day 1)
Football @ VMI 27-20
Soccer (M) @ Belmont Abbey 0-4
Tennis (W) @ Wingate Individual Tourn. (Day 2)
Tennis (M) @ Wingate Individual Tourn. (Day 2)
Soccer (W) vs. FLAGLER 0-4
Volleyball @ Mars Hill 3-1
Volleyball vs. TUSCULUM 2-3
Soccer (M) vs. MARS HILL 0-1
Football @ UNC Pembroke 41-9
Soccer (W) vs. MARS HILL 4-0
Golf (M) @ Queens Inv. - Day 1 (Club at Irish Creek)
Golf (M) @ Queens Inv. - Day 2 (Club at Irish Creek) 11th of 16
Volleyball @ Lenoir-Rhyne 0-3
Soccer (W) @ Newberry 2-1
Soccer (M) @ Newberry 2-4
Volleyball @ Lincoln Memorial 1-3
Golf (W) @ Battle at Old South - Day 1 (Old South GC)
Cross Country @ Bulldog Stampede W-5th;M-9th
Soccer (W) @ Coker 3-0
Volleyball @ Carson-Newman 0-3
Football vs. MARS HILL 37-13
Soccer (M) @ Coker 2-1
Golf (W) @ Battle at Old South - Day 2 (Old South GC) 15th of 18
Golf (M) @ King Inv - Day 1 (CC of Bristol)
Golf (M) @ King Inv - Day 2 (CC of Bristol)
Tennis (W) @ Pfeiffer 3 p.m.
Volleyball vs. ANDERSON 6 p.m.
Tennis (M) @ Pfeiffer 3 p.m.
Soccer (W) vs. USC AIKEN 5 p.m.
Cross Country @ Royals Challenge
Tennis (M) @ SE ITA Championships (Day 1)
Tennis (W) @ SE ITA Championships (Day 1)
Volleyball vs. QUEENS 7 p.m.
Tennis (W) @ SE ITA Championships (Day 2)
Tennis (M) @ SE ITA Championships (Day 2)
Football @ Carson-Newman 1 p.m.
Volleyball vs. WINGATE 2 p.m.
Soccer (W) vs. GEORGIA COLLEGE 3 p.m.
Soccer (M) vs. LANDER 7 p.m.
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