Chants prevail on Cougars’ floor for first time since ’77

ccuhoops-cofcWhile the defense took control, the Chants used a quick 6-0 run by Jaylen Shaw and Elijah Wilson to break a 55-all tie, then made seven free throws down the stretch to defeat College of Charleston 67-61 Wednesday evening at TD Arena. The win was the first for the Chanticleers in the Cougars’ home arena since January 1977.

Badou Diagne led the Chanticleers (3-2) with a 14-point, 10-rebound double-double. Joining Diagne in double-figures was Wilson with 14, Shivaughn Wiggins with 13 and Colton Ray-St Cyr with 10. Wiggins, who was playing his first game since Nov. 15, also paced the Chanticleers with four assists.

College of Charleston (2-2) was paced offensively by Cameron Johnson’s 20 points on seven made shots, including a trio of 3-pointers.

The Chants trailed 42-34 at the 13:46 mark of the second half before putting together a 21-8 run over the ensuing 9:45 to take a 54-50 lead. CofC quickly rallied with a layup and a 3-pointer by Cameron Johnson to knot the game at 55 with 2:44 to go.

Shaw answered first with a twisting layup, followed by a defensive rebound by Diagne and a spinning Wilson jumper in the lane. Shaw seemingly put the game away for good with his steal near half court and layup with 1:26 to go, giving the Chants a 61-55 lead.

Coastal made seven of its final foul shots down the stretch to salt away their first Division I victory of the season.

Coastal led 28-27 at the half with Diagne registering 10 of those points. The Chanticleers not only controlled the scoreboard, but also the rebounding battle as they outrebounded their hosts 18-10 in the opening 20 minutes of action.

However, the more impressive feat of the first half was the Chanticleers’ ability to clamp down on the defensive end and hold Canyon Barry, who entered the contest as the nation’s leading scorer at 28.0 points per game, scoreless and 0 for 4 from the field.

Coastal closed the game shooting 55.3 percent from the field, while also controlling the boards 39-33. The Chanticleers also exhibited their veteran frontcourt in outscoring the Cougars 34-8 in the paint.

The Chanticleers open their final season of Big South Conference play Saturday, Nov. 28 at Campbell. Tipoff at the Fighting Camels’ Pope Convocation Center is scheduled for 2 p.m.

Photo courtesy of C of C Athletics

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