Charleston Southern hangs on for 72-69 win over Campbell

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

Follow Campbell Men's Basketball: Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Box Score (PDF)

CHARLESTON, S.C. – Christian Keeling scored 22 points, 17 in the second half, and Charleston Southern held off Campbell 72-69 Wednesday night at the CSU Field House.

The Bucs rallied from a 13-point deficit in the first half; then withstood a final possession when Campbell's Andrew Eudy hit two three-point attempts rim out.

Javis Howard added 13 points for Charleston Southern (9-17, 5-10 Big South), while Armel Potter, Cortez Mitchell and Raemond Robinson contributed 11 each.  The Big South's leading freshman scorer, Keeling finished 7-of-14 from the floor and 7-of-7 from the line while pulling down eight rebounds.

Chris Clemons led Campbell (13-14, 6-9) with 30 points, including 5-of-11 three-pointers, and four steals.  Shane Whitfield finished with 11 points and Cory Gensler 10 for the Camels, who entered the game as the Big South's top free throw shooting team (75 percent), but made just 13-of-20 from the line.  Mogga Lado came off the bench to pull down a career-high 10 rebounds.

A 14-2 run early in the second half propelled Charleston Southern to a 49-42 lead on Keeling's fast-break layup with 16:08 left.  Campbell answered with an 8-0 burst and Gensler's 3 with 13:50 to play gave the Camels what proved to be their last lead (60-59).

Marcus Burk's triple brought the Camels within 60-59 with 8:00 remaining, but the Camels went 4:50 without a field goal and the Bucs stretched their lead to 68-60.  Campbell cut the gap to three a trio of times in the last 2:43, but could not draw closer.

Keeling missed a layup with 28 seconds to go, and Campbell called timeout with 16 seconds left to set up a game-tying attempt.  The Bucs covered Campbell's three-point shooters – Clemons, Burk and Gensler – leaving Eudy with a pair of chances in the final 8 seconds.  However, the Camels could not complete the comeback.

Playing without injured senior guard Kyre' Hamer, the Camels scored the first 13 points of the game and led 37-32 at the break thanks to 21 first-half points from Clemons.  The 5-foot-9 sophomore hit 8-of-13 from the floor, including 3-of-5 threes, and had 3 steals in the first 20 minutes.

Campbell shot 41 percent for the game; made 10-of-23 threes and committed just nine turnovers, but eight of those came in the final half.  Charleston Southern finished 27-of-57 (.474) from the floor, made 6-of-20 from three-point range, 12-of-15 from the stripe and had a 17-11 edge in points off turnovers.

The nation's fifth-leading scorer, Clemons turned in his third 30-plus point outing of the year and sixth of his career.  The 5-foot-9 sophomore moved into 20th place on Campbell's all-time scoring list, 10th in the Division I era (since 1977-78) and has 1187 points in 57 career games.

Campbell hosts Big South co-leader UNC Asheville (21-7, 13-2) Saturday at 2:00 p.m.