ANDERSON, S.C. – The Anderson University men's basketball team opened a three-game South Atlantic Conference homestand with an 81-65 setback to Carson-Newman, Wednesday night at the Abney Athletic Center.
Anderson slipped to 2-7 overall on the season and 0-2 in the conference, while Carson-Newman (8-1, 2-1 SAC), which was nationally ranked as late as last week, bounced back from suffering its first loss of the season last Saturday at Newberry.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
Sophomore guard Christian Jeffords came off the bench to score a team-high 12 points in just 15 minutes of action, while junior guard Andrew Boynton equaled a season-high with 11 points and shared game-high honors with four assists. Junior forward Jeremy Bouton netted 10 points and pulled down five rebounds, with senior forward Luke Musselwhite recording seven points and grabbing a team-high six rebounds. Junior guard Randall Shaw added nine points, while senior guard Maurice Howard handed out four assists.
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Trojans opened the game by connecting on their first three shots, including a pair of 3-pointers, first by Shaw, then from Bouton and rode the early accuracy to a quick 8-4 lead inside the opening three minutes. Carson-Newman's Charles Clark, the reigning SAC Player of the Year, then connected on three consecutive treys to give the visitors a 13-8 lead with 15:16 on the clock.
AU's Rakish Taylor answered with a dunk and Shaw followed with a traditional three-point play to knot the score for the only time of the night, at 13 apiece. But the Eagles responded with 10 unanswered points as part of a 13-2 run over a seven-minute span to take a 26-15 advantage.
Josh Livingston and Bouton scored five straight for the Trojans, but Carson-Newman steadily built the margin to 15 points and held a 39-24 lead at intermission.
The Eagles' advantage surged to 31 points less than six minutes into the second stanza, as they opened the frame on a 22-8 run.
Trailing, 75-50, with less than five minutes on the clock, Boynton knocked down a pair of 3-pointers and Jeffords added five points to fuel a 15-4 run by the Trojans in the final minutes.
STAT OF THE NIGHT
The Trojans were 4-of-6 from the free throw line, while the Eagles connected on 14-of-30 from the charity stripe.
• Carson-Newman won the battle of the boards, 50-37, and pulled down 14 offensive boards.
• The two teams battled to a stalemate in the paint, with each team scoring 26 points from close range.
• The Trojans converted 13 Carson-Newman turnovers into 13 points.
• Randall Shaw saw his streak of 14 consecutive made free throws come to an end in the second half.
• Andrew Boynton is a perfect 10-of-10 from the charity stripe on the season.
• The Trojans have connected on exactly nine 3-pointers in four straight games.
• The Trojans have posted a positive or even assist/turnover ratio in four straight games.
Nationally second-ranked Queens University of Charlotte invades the Abney Athletic Center on Saturday. Tip-off versus the Royals is slated for 4 p.m.