Campbell takes over Kimbel for season sweep of Chants

The Coastal Carolina men’s basketball team suffered its first home conference loss of the season in Tuesday night’s 81-75 defeat to Campbell.

The Fightin’ Camels (16-11 overall, 10-5 Big South) caught fire in the second half to erase an 11-point deficit. Campbell shot nearly 62 percent from the floor to beat the Chants at their own game.

Coastal (17-6, 10-3) was second in the NCAA in shooting percentage at 50.1 percent entering the game, but it was the Camels who made themselves home at Kimbel Arena.

Eric Griffin scored a game-high 25 points to lead the Camels, who swept the regular-season series against the Chants. Campbell beat CCU 70-67 in overtime last month in Buies Creek, N.C.

The Camels are in sole possession of third place in the league behind Coastal, which now trails first-place UNC Asheville by two games. The first-place team will host the Big South Conference Tournament.

Campbell scored the game’s first nine points and led until midway through the first half, when Coastal’s Dexter Moore hit a 3-pointer for a 21-20 lead. Coastal carried a 34-31 lead into the locker room.

The Chants appeared ready to put the Camels away early in the second quarter, taking a 50-39 advantage before Campbell heated up from 3-point range.

Griffin helped Campbell recapture the lead, then back-to-back 3-pointers by Freeman and Murphy helped the Camels match their largest lead of the night at nine points, 79-70, with 2 minutes remaining.

Coastal couldn’t overcome the hot stretch by the Camels, who saw Darren White score 16 points, Tre Freeman add 12 points and Murphy contribute 10.

Chris Gradnigo led the Chants with 20 points and Moore had a season-high 17. Kierre Greenwood 10, Jon Pack 10 and Sam McLaurin scored 10 apiece.

Coastal return to action Thursday night when High Point visits for a 7 p.m. tipoff.

Photo courtesy of CCU Athletics

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