Chants run home win streak to eight by upsetting Bucs

The Coastal Carolina men’s basketball team took down Big South Conference leader Charleston Southern University 73-53 at home Wednesday night to push its home win streak to eight games.

Coastal dominated the boards and had balanced scoring with four players reaching double-figures. The Chants outrebounded the Bucs 47-27 and held Charleston Southern to just six 3-pointers. The Bucs came into the game ranked second in the NCAA in 3-pointers per game with 9.6. Coastal’s defense forced CSU to shoot just 31.0 percent from the field and just 18.8 percent from 3-point range. The Chants on the other hand shot 48.1 percent from the field and 54.5 percent from long range.

Coastal improves its record to 11-10 on the season and 6-4 in Big South play while the Bucs fall to 12-8 overall and 7-2 in BSC action.

Sophomore Warren Gillis led the way for the Chants scoring 19 points, just two off his career-high, grabbing six rebounds and dishing out three assists. Senior Anthony Raffa added 17 points and three rebounds while senior Kierre Greenwood had 16 points, five assists, four steals and four rebounds. Freshman Michel Enanga recorded his second double-double of the season with 12 points and 10 rebounds. He also had a pair of steals. Junior El Hadji Ndieguene returned after a one-game absence and led the team with 12 rebounds and scored seven points.

The Bucs were led by sophomore Arlon Harper who scored 21 points, including 15 in the first half, and grabbed five rebounds. Mathiang Muo added 10 points and four rebounds. Preseason first team all-conference selection Saah Nimley was held to just seven points and two boards while going 2-of-13 from the field.

The game was very tight over the opening eight minutes of action with both teams taking small leads. With the game tied at 13 with 12:03 to play in the first half the Chants began an 11-0 run sparked by a Gillis 3-pointer. The two teams traded baskets the rest of the half as the period ended with Coastal on top 37-23.

CCU controlled most of the second half as the lead never dipped under double-digits. The Bucs made a small comeback early in the period as a Jeremy Sexton layup with 15:47 to play cut the lead to just 10. The Chants answered with a 15-0 run including six points from Enanga. Later in the period with Chants up 65-44, the Bucs began a 8-0 run, including back-to-back 3-pointers, that cut the lead to just 13 but that would be as close as CSU would get. Six free throws and a layup would be all the Chants needed down the stretch to hold off the Bucs as CSU scored just one point over the final two minutes.

The Chants return to action this Saturday at 7 p.m. as they travel to BSC North Division leader High Point.

Photo by Joel Beachum

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