Jan. 13, 2011
CONWAY, S.C. - Sam McLaurin registered a double-double and Coastal Carolina won a school-record 13th consecutive game with a 74-69 victory over Winthrop Thursday night from Kimbel Arena.
Coastal surpassed its previous record winning streak of 12 games set in the 2005-06 and 2009-10 seasons and enters its game Saturday with the fifth-longest current winning streak in the NCAA.
McLaurin scored a career-high 17 points and pulled down 10 rebounds to surpass his previous career-high of 13 points he scored last season at VMI. McLaurin was 7-for-10 from the field and 3-for-4 from the free throw line to help the Chants shoot 46.6 percent on the night.
Chad Gray finished with a team-high 19 points, nine rebounds, two blocks and a career-high four steals, while both Anthony Raffa and Dexter Moore added 12 points apiece.
Coastal was without its two leading scorers, as Desmond Holloway and Mike Holmes did not play. Holloway is second in the Big South with 19.0 points per game, while Holmes averages 14.0 points and 8.4 rebounds per game.
Robbie Dreher led Winthrop with 21 points and nine rebounds, while Andre Jones finished with 16 points and was 3-for-4 from three-point range. Charles Corbin and Reggie Middleton both poured in 11 points for the Eagles.
Gray gave Coastal Carolina (15-2, 6-0) its largest lead of the second half with a layup off a feed from Kierre Greenwood to put the Chants up 66-58 lead with just over four minutes.
Dreher answered on the other end for Winthrop with a three-pointer to cut the Coastal lead to five points with 3:49 left on the clock. The Eagles forced on turnover on the ensuing Coastal possession and a 3-pointer from Jones thereafter pulled Winthrop to within two points at 66-64.
Winthrop appeared to get the stop it needed on the following Chanticleer possession, but Raffa's deep three-point attempt with the shot clock nearing zero hit off the backboard and found its way into the basket. Gray then turned a steal into easy basket in the lane to put Coastal up 71-64 with just under two minutes left.
Jones responded with another three-pointer to draw the Eagles within four points, and Dreher hit a pair of free throws minutes later to cut the deficit to just two points.
Danny Nieman took a three-pointer from the top of the key with 19 seconds left as the shot clock dwindled down, but McLaurin kept the possession alive with an offensive rebound through traffic. McLaurin, however, was forced into a turnover and Withrop gained possession.
The Eagles threw an outlet pass down the floor in an attempt at a quick basket, but Greenwood came in from behind and poked the ball out of the hands Dreher and into the chest of Raffa. Raffa hit the first free throw attempt, but missed his second shot. However, Raffa knifed his way through the lane and grabbed his own rebound and was immediately fouled again.
This time Raffa hit both free throws to put the Chants ahead by five points. Matt Morgan's three-point shot at the horn fell harmlessly into the hands of McLaurin.
Coastal returns to action Saturday at 4:30 p.m. when the Chants host Presbyterian from Kimbel Arena.