Winthrop jumped out to an early lead in the first half, opening play with a three pointer from junior Brandon Key and going up 12-5 in the first six minutes of play. Coastal slowly fought back and eventually pulled ahead at 19-18 with 9:28 to go in the half. The teams battled throughout the rest of the period, and Coastal carried a four-point lead into the halftime break, 36-32.
Coastal could not build more than an eight-point lead and kept the lead for 16 minutes of the second half until Winthrop pulled ahead, 57-56, on a Marcus Cooke layup with 4:03 left to play. The Chants immediately answered with a jumper by Kelvin Coggins and pushed the lead back to four at 62-58 on Mihai Raducanu's layup with 2:38 to go. However, Winthrop's Tyrone Walker, the preseason Big South Player of the Year, made his impact in the closing minutes, scoring seven of the Eagles' final eight points, including the game winner with nine seconds to play.
Coastal, the league leader in free throw percentage, struggled at the charity stripe, hitting only 10 of 22 attempts. Four Chanticleers scored in double digits, led by E.J. Gallup and Alvin Green, who each contributed 13. Senior Mihai Raducanu had a complete game, scoring 11 points and a game-high eight rebounds. Winthrop was led by Tyrone Walker, with a game-high 15 poitns and eight boards, while Cooke and Brandon Key each added 11.
Coastal is next in action, Mon., Jan. 19, as it hosts UNC Asheville at 7 p.m. as the second half of a doubleheader with the women. Winthrop next plays Charleston Southern in Rock Hill, Wed., Jan. 21 at 7 p.m.