Jan. 4, 2011
Coastal Carolina (12-2, 3-0) vs. VMI (9-5, 2-2)
Thursday | 1.6.11 | 7:00 p.m.
Lexington, Va. | Cameron Hall (5,029)
CONWAY, S.C. – The Coastal Carolina men’s basketball team looks to continue its winning ways this week when the Chanticleers take to the road for conference games against VMI and Liberty.
Coastal Carolina (12-2, 3-0) has won its last 10 games and will be looking to tie the school record of 12 consecutive wins set in both the 2005-06 and 2009-10 seasons. In addition, it’s the second straight season Coastal has turned in a winning streak of at least 10 games. The Chants are the first Big South team since Radford in 1997-98 (11) and 1998-99 (13) to have a 10-game winning streak in back-to-back seasons.
Chanticleer head coach Cliff Ellis will also be in search of some history of his own should Coastal win both games this week. Ellis is just two wins shy of becoming the 26th coach in NCAA history to win 600 Division I games. He enters Thursday’s game at VMI with an all-time record of 598-380 and ranks 10th all-time in wins among active coaches.
Coastal won its 10th straight game Sunday with a 78-60 victory over High Point to improve to 8-0 at home. Four Chants scored in double figures and Coastal held Big South Preseason Player of the Year Nick Barbour to just nine points on 3-of-11 shooting.
Desmond Holloway scored a game-high 21 points and grabbed six rebounds to mark the sixth time this season he has scored at least 20 points. Holloway has scored at least 13 points in every game this season and is the only player in the Big South to have scored in double digits in all of his team’s games.
Chad Gray added 19 points, a career-high 12 rebounds and five blocked shots to post his second double-double of the season. Mike Holmes poured in 16 points and nine rebounds, while Kierre Greenwood finished with 13 points and a game-high five assists.
VMI enters Thursday night having won its last two games to improve to 9-5 overall and 2-2 inside the Big South. The Keydets posted road wins over both UNC Asheville and Gardner-Webb last weekend to earn their first road wins since winning at UMBC on Nov. 14. VMI is 6-2 at home thus far this season, but has lost two of its last three games inside Cameron Hall.
As a team, the Keydets lead the Big South in scoring offense with 92.9 points per game. VMI has turned in four games in which it has scored at least 106 points. The Keydets, however, also rank last in the Big South in scoring defense by giving up 80.8 points per game.
Individually, VMI features five players who are scoring in double figures. Sophomore forward Stan Okoye leads the team and is first in the Big South with 19.8 points per game. Okoye is also second in the conference with 9.6 rebounds per game. Junior guard Keith Gabriel is second on the team and third in the league with 16.4 points per game and leads the Keydets with 32 steals. Senior guard Austin Kenon also scores 16.4 points per game and leads the Big South with a .388 shooting percentage from three-point range. Freshman guard Rodney Glasgow pours in 12.6 points per game and is second in the Big South with 4.86 assists per game.
Coastal Carolina and VMI will be meeting on the hardwood for the 17th time when the two teams tipoff Thursday evening in Lexington, Va. Coastal Carolina owns an 11-5 record against VMI in the all-time series that dates back to the 2003-04 season. Coastal has won three straight games with VMI and four of the last five meetings between the two. Last season, Coastal won all three meetings with VMI as the Chants won at home, at VMI and in the Big South Tournament. The Chants are 4-4 all-time when playing at VMI, but have lost two of the last three games in Lexington.