CHARLESTON, S.C.- Coastal Carolina battled through most of the game, but came up on the short end of an 87-69 decision to host College of Charleston, Dec. 22 at John Kresse Arena in Charleston. Coastal drops to 2-8 on the season, while CofC advances to 5-3 on the year.
The game was tight in the opening minutes, as the teams exchanged several leads, along with seven ties in the first 11 minutes, the last at 25 apiece. Coastal eventually went up 27-25 on senior Clint Nagels (Loveland, Ohio-Moeller) jumper, but CofC went on an 8-0 run over next 2:32 to take a 33-27 lead with 4:51 to go in the half. Coastal cut it to three in the late stages of the half with just over a minute to go, but the Cougars Bernard Jackson scored the last five points of the half and sent CofC into the halftime lockerroom with a 42-34 lead.
Coastal shot 52 percent from the floor in the first half, but was outrebounded 21-14 by the Cougars and made just four of nine free throws. CCU was led by junior Pele Paelay (Derwood, Md./Magruder) with nine points in the half, while sophomore Moses Sonko (East Greenwich, R.I./Classical added eight. Tony Mitchell led CofC in the first half with 14.
CCU cut the lead quickly in the second half, going on a 7-1 run in the first 2:03 to force a College of Charleston timeout with the Cougars leading 43-41. After subbing all five players for CofC, the home squad went on a 7-0 run of their own to push the lead back to 50-41 with 15:42 to play. After getting the lead down to 55-49 with 12:12 to play, CofC took over the game for good, going on a 17-2 run over the next 5:21, sparked by 10 from Stanley Jackson, to take a commanding 72-51 lead the home team would never relinquish.
Coastal shot45.6 percent for the contest, including hitting seven three-pointers, but the Chanticleers were outrebounded 48-28 in the game, including 17 offensive rebounds by CofC for 21 points. The Cougars hit on 48.5 percent for the game, including 51.6 percent in the second half.
Coastal was led by Sonko with 14 points, while Paelay and freshman Jack Leasure (Rochester, N.Y./McQuaid Jesuit) with 13 and 12 respectively. College of Charleston had six players in double figures on the night, led by Tony Mitchell with 16 points, 14 coming in the first half. Bernard Jackson had 15, while Dontaye Draper and Robert Swain made a difference in the second half, tallying their combined 21 points all in the final stanza.
The Chants return to action after the Christmas holiday on Wed., Dec. 29 when they host Ohio Northern for a 7 p.m. tip at Kimbel Arena.