Men's Basketball Rally Comes Up Short at UNC Asheville, 74-63
ASHEVILLE, N.C – The Coastal Carolina University men’s basketball team (11-17, 5-11 Big South) nearly came back from a 23-point second-half deficit, cutting the UNC Asheville (14-14, 10-7 Big South) lead to three with 3:40 left, but the Bulldogs would end the game on an 11-3 run to take the 74-63 win over the Chanticleers Feb. 21 in Asheville, N.C.
UNC Asheville took a 13-point halftime lead, thanks to a 24-0 run over an 8:20 span. Coastal Carolina had an 11-9 lead on a layup from redshirt junior Joseph Harris (Lejeune, N.C./Lejeune) at 12:34, but Asheville led 33-11 at 3:46 on a layup from Eric Stubbs. Coastal Carolina would make it a 36-23 game at halftime as Harris hit a jumper with three seconds remaining. Coastal Carolina struggled from the floor in the first half, shooting just 31.3 percent from the field and 3-of-10 from three-point range. Junior Mario Edwards (Massillon, Ohio/Chipola J.C.) had 11 first-half points, while Harris added 10 points and four rebounds.
Asheville would start the second half strong, taking a 23-point lead (56-33) at 12:38 on a layup from J.P. Primm, but the Bulldogs would be stuck on 56 for a long time. Four points from Harris and a layup from redshirt freshman Jon Pack (Dallas, Ga./East Paulding) made it 56-41 at 9:50. A Pack layup, Harris steal and three-point play cut the Asheville lead to 56-48 at 7:57. Asheville would get the lead back to nine (59-50) at 6:46 on an Augst layup, but three points from freshman Dexter Moore (Bluefield, W. Va./Hargrave Military) cut the lead to four with 5:28 left. The teams traded baskets, but a John Williams dunk was answered by a three from senior Steven Sexton (Monticello, Ky./Wayne County) to make it 63-60 with 3:40 left. Harris grabbed a Bulldog miss on the next possession, but missed a layup on the other end. Reid Augst then scored with 2:48 left, starting a 12-0 run that gave the win to the Bulldogs.
Harris fell one point short of his career high with 32 points, while he recorded his ninth straight double-double by adding 12 rebounds. Edwards had 11 points, while Pack added eight. Redshirt junior Logan Johnson (Knoxville, Tenn./South Doyle) had eight assists, while Harris had a game-high four steals.
Augst and Matt Dickey had 21 points apiece to lead UNC Asheville. Williams added 18 points and had seven blocked shots. J.P. Primm dished out seven assists to go with his seven points.
Coastal Carolina ended the game shooting 33.3 percent from the floor and 5-of-25 from three-point range. Asheville shot 53.6 percent from the floor and was 10-of-12 from the free-throw line. Asheville also had 46 points in the paint.
Coastal Carolina continues its three-game road trip Thursday, Feb. 26 at Charleston Southern. Game time is at 7:30 p.m., in the CSU Field House.