Coastal fades down stretch in loss to Tennessee Tech

After torching the Chants for 22 points in last season’s ESPN Bracketbusters game, Jud Dillard of Tennessee Tech stepped up his game and dropped 34 points including 26 in the second half on Coastal Carolina as the Golden Eagles edged out a two point victory at home.

The Chanticleers (1-2) led by five points at the break and by four with three minutes to play but that did not deter Dillard as he scored seven of the Golden Eagles (2-0) final nine points to take a 71-69 win.

Coastal was led by senior Anthony Raffa who scored 25 points and grabbed four rebounds while hitting 8-of-10 from the free-throw line. He also hit a career-high five shots from 3-point range. Senior Kierre Greenwood added 19 points, five rebounds and three steals. He also dished out two assists which moved him into fifth-place in the Coastal Carolina record book for career assists. He now has 377 assists which is just 34 away from fourth-place. Greenwood was also on fire from the free-throw line as he hit 11-of-13 from the charity stripe including hitting his first nine attempts. Freshman Tristian Curtis chipped in nine points off the bench while freshman Michel Enanga had six points and a team-high seven rebounds.

Tennessee Tech was led by Dillard’s 34 points while he added a team-high 12 rebounds. TTU out-scored the Chants 28-16 in the paint, 19-13 off turnovers and 20-13 in second chance points. Coastal won the battle of the boards 33-30.

The Chants led for most of the first half after Raffa opened the game with a 3-pointer. The Golden Eagles held the lead in the first half for a combined time of 1:06. Coastal either had the lead or was tied for the remaining 18:54.

Coastal held the lead in the second half until the 11:09 mark when a three from Dillard gave the Golden Eagles a 44-43 advantage. Coastal would trail or be tied for the next 5:54. With 7:38 left on the clock and the Chants down 57-50, Coastal began a 12-2 run thanks to six points from Raffa including a three and an old-fashioned three-point play, four points from Badou Diagne and a pair of free throws from Enanga. The run gave Coastal a 62-59 lead with 4:38 left in the game. CCU would hold the lead up until the 1:18 mark when a layup by the Golden Eagles gave TTU a 68-67 lead.

After an empty possession by the Chants Dillard hit a layup to push the TTU lead to three. Coastal once again came up empty and Dillard answered with one of two free throws to put the Golden Eagles up 71-67. Greenwood hit a layup with one second on the clock to cut the lead to two and the Chants quickly fouled. The Golden Eagles missed the free throw which gave Coastal .4 seconds left on the clock to make it the length of the court. CCU was able to get the ball all the way down to their own free throw line but time ran out before a Chanticleer was able to get off a shot.

The Chanticleers will return to action this Tuesday, Nov. 20 at 7:30 p.m. as they host Johnson & Wales in just the second game inside The HTC Center.

Photo by Joel Beachum

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