Samford holds off Camels 66-53

Chris Clemons
(Will Bratton photo)
Chris Clemons (Will Bratton photo)

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BUIES CREEK, N.C. – Wyatt Walker had 16 points and 16 rebounds to lead Samford to a 66-53 win over Campbell Monday at Gore Arena.

Demetrius Denzel-Dyson added 13 points and Christen Cunningham 10, plus five assists for the Bulldogs (2-1), who withstood a second-half Camel rally.

Chris Clemons led Campbell (1-3) with 23 points, four assists, three blocks and five steals, but freshman Marcus Burk (10) was the only other Camel to reach double figures.  Campbell made just 31 percent of its shots on the night (19-62), 6-of-28 from 3-point distance.

Samford finished with a 49-34 advantage on the boards and held a 22-7 edge in second-chance points.

The Bulldogs closed the first period on an 11-2 run and led 29-18 at the break. Denzel-Dyson scored all 11 of his first half points in the last 6:56 as the Bulldogs turned a 12-8 deficit into an 11-point advantage.

Clemons had nine of Campbell's 18 first-half points, but the Camels made only 6-of-32 (.188) from the field – 1-of-10 from 3-point range – in the opening half.

With the Camels trailing by 11 early in the second half, Clemons scored eight points in a 13-4 run capped by Burk's corner three that cut the gap to 36-34 with 12:26 remaining.  However, Josh Sharkey answered with a three that ignited a 9-2 Samford burst that the Bulldogs extended to a 21-7 run.

Christen Cunningham's drive in traffic gave Samford its largest lead (57-41) with 5:14 to play.  Damontez Oliver's floater in the lane trimmed the margin to eight (61-53) with 1:58 to play, but the Camels drew no closer.

Clemons, who entered the game as the Big South's leading scorer (21.7), hit the 20-point barrier for the third time in four games this year, while hitting career highs in assists and blocks.

The Camels return to action Saturday with a 1:00 p.m. start at VMI.  Samford plays Wednesday at Cincinnati.