Basketball (M)

Freshmen Shine for Men's Basketball in League-Opening Loss at Carson-Newman

09_MBB_HuntleyJustin

JEFFERSON CITY, TBN -- Host Carson-Newman used a late first half rally and went on to take a 74-66 win over Catawba in a South Atlantic Conference men's basketball contest on Wednesday night at Holt Fieldhouse.  The Eagles claim the SAC opener for both teams and improve to 5-3 overall.  The Catawba Indians fall to 3-3.

Catawba led 19-12 inside the final seven minutes of the first half, but the Eagles used a 12-3 run to take the lead with 3:22 remaining on a jumper by Ishmael Sanders.  Antoine Davis sank a three-pointer for a 27-25 edge with two minutes left before the break and the Eagles would lead the rest of the way.

Carson-Newman led 33-37 at the half, getting 10 points and six boards from Davis.  The Eagles pushed the margin to 14 at 52-38 with 12:36 to go.  Catawba rallied, scoring 11 straight points to cut the deficit to three at the 8:52 mark on a layup by Keon Moore (Colerain, NC/Bertie HS) that marked the sophomore's seventh straight point.

Catawba could never pull even.  Lee Martin (Mt. Airy,NC/N.Surry HS/Hargrave) hit a three to keep the Indians close at 60-56 and two free throws from Willie Gilmore (Fayetteville, NC/Trinity Christian) made it 67-62 with 3:06 left.  Sanders would hit a three-pointer for the Eagles and Davis followed with a layup to push the C-N margin back to double-digits with 2:29 remaining.

Although Carson-Newman went just 2-for-7 at the line in the final 1:16, Catawba could not cut much off the deficit.  The Indians shot just 34% (21-of-62) in the loss and just 30% in the second half.  The Eagles canned 56% in the final 20 minutes to shot 45% 928-of-62) for the game.  C-N also connected on 10 three-pointers.

Davis finished with a game-high 21 points for Carson-Newman.  Sanders collected 16 points, while Kennedy Eubanks had a double-double of 14 points and 10 rebounds.  Gilmore led the Indians with 15 points with Tyrece Little (Greenville, NC/Rose HS) had a double-double of 13 points and 10 rebounds while blocking four shots.  Moore, the league's leading scorer and reining player of the week was held to just nine points and 3-of-16 shooting.

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