Down by 10 midway through the second half, the Blue Hose rallied to cut the lead to just one, but the Cougars responded with back to back threes to quell the comeback as the College of Charleston men’s basketball team came away with the 85-73 win over Presbyterian College at TD Arena In Charleston, S.C., in the season-opener for both teams. Francois Lewis led the Blue Hose with 21 points, just four shy of his career-high.
Scoring the Game
Two three-pointers by Francois Lewis in the opening three and a half minutes gave PC an early 12-4 lead, but it was CofC with a 12-4 run over the next five minutes, behind five points from Grant Riller to knot the game at 16-16, 10:43 to go in the half. Trailing 18-20 at 8:34 after back to back free throws from Adam Flagler, the Cougars outscored the Blue Hose 11-4 to take a 29-24 lead with 3:45 before the break. Two straight lay-ups by Lewis helped cut the margin to one, 28-29, but the Cougars closed out the final two and a half minutes with a 7-2 stretch, including the final four points, to go into the locker room leading 36-30.
A Romeo Crouch three-pointer with 16:38 left in the second half made it a two-point game, 39-41, but five unanswered from CofC increased the lead to seven, 46-39, 14:51 to go. Charleston took its first double-digit lead at 12:58 off an Isaih Moore three-pointer, but PC responded with five straight to cut the margin to five, 46-51. The Blue Hose kept hanging around and, trailing by nine, at 11:08, went on a 10-2 run, capped by a Flagler three-pointer at 8:56, to cut the margin to one, 56-57. Back to back three-pointers by CofC over the next minute took the Cougars back to seven. PC got back to a five-point deficit off a JC Younger lay-up at 6:56 but that would be as close as the visitors would get with CofC outscoring PC 12-2 over the next three and a half minutes to take a 13-point lead, 72-65. A 5-0 PC run, highlighted by a Davon Bell three-pointer, cut the margin to eight but it was not enough as the Cougars held off the Blue Hose down the stretch for the 85-73 win
Players of the Game
Lewis led the Blue Hose with 21 points, just four shy of his career-mark of 25, set last season at Longwood. Cory Hightower led the team on the boards with six, fellow freshman Flagler right behind him with five. Flagler was second on the team in scoring with 12, with Bell coming in at 11. Bell’s team-leading seven rebounds was only two away from his career-best. Riller led CofC with 27 points, with Jarrell Brantley tops in rebounds with 14.
Stats of the Game
Rebounds played a factor in CofC’s win, with the Cougars holding a 48-30 advantage, including a 22-8 mark on the offensive end, resulting in a 25-13 margin in second chance points. PC shot a game-leading 43% from the field, with Charleston finishing with 41%. The Blue Hose hit seven three-pointers, compared to six for CofC. PC was perfect from the charity stripe 14-14, with CofC going 21-for-26. Charleston finished with eight turnovers to PC’s 11.
- Francois Lewis’ 21 points was four shy of his career-best, his nine field goals tying his high mark.
- Davon Bell was two shy of his career-best with seven assists.
For the Record
PC opens the season 0-1, CofC 1-0.
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