Camels and Highlanders battle Friday in 6 pm Big South semifinal

Chris Clemons
(Carlos Morales/BigSouthPhotos.com)
Chris Clemons (Carlos Morales/BigSouthPhotos.com)

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Campbell Game Notes (PDF)

ROCK HILL, S.C. – Coming off an 81-79 upset over 2nd-seeded UNC Asheville, 7th-seeded Campbell (16-16) meets 6th seed Radford (14-17) in Friday's 6:00 p.m. Big South Championship semifinal at Rock Hill, S.C.  The winner will advance to Sunday's 1 p.m. Big South Championship game that will be televised by ESPN.

Chris Clemons scored a Big South and school record 51 points in Thursday's quarterfinal win, hitting 18-of-32 shots, including 8-of-14 threes, and 7-of-8 from the line.  He tied Mike Daum of South Dakota State for the most points scored in a game by a Division I player in 2016-17.

The Camels rallied from a 14-point first-half deficit to lead the defending champs 36-35 at the break.  CU also recovered from a 67-61 hole with 7:02 remaining to reach its conference semifinal round for the first time since the 2007 A-Sun Championship.

Campbell swept the season series from the Highlanders, claiming a 78-61 decision Jan. 26 at Radford and a 61-58 last Saturday at Buies Creek.  Clemons led CU with 36 points at Radford in a game that was televised by ESPNU and had 16 points, plus a career-high 9 rebounds and 4 steals last week.

Notes:

  • Campbell guard Chris Clemons was named to the Big South all-conference 1st team and to the Big South all-academic team.  The nation's 5th-leading scorer (24.1 ppg) has scored at least 20 points 23 times in 31 games this year, most in the Big South.  He has moved into 15th place on CU's all-time scoring list (1304), 8th in the Division I era (since '77-78) and has broken the school season scoring mark (748) previously set by Clarence Grier (739) in 1986-87. 
  • Campbell and Radford have met only twice in Big South tournament play. RU defeated the Camels 68-44 in the 1990 quarterfinals at Rock Hill.  Campbell won 72-61 in the 1994 semis at Charleston.
  • The Camels lead the Big South in free throw percentage (.748) and are on pace to break the school season record (.722).
  • Radford defeated 3rd-seeded Liberty 56-52 in Thursday's 2nd quarterfinal. Ed Polite, Jr. scored 14 points and Christian Bradford added 11, plus 5 assists, and the Highlanders held Liberty to just 35.7 percent shooting from the floor.
  • Radford leads the all-time series with the Camels 21-16, but Campbell has won 6 of 10 games since returning to the Big South in 2011-12.
  • The Highlanders are 6-12 away from home this year, including 2-1 at neutral sites.
  • Radford was the only team in the Big South to record regular season wins over both co-champs, Winthrop and UNC Asheville.
  • Radford sophomore forward Ed Polite, Jr. leads the Big South and ranks 32nd in the nation in rebounding (9.5).  He is 2nd in the league in offensive boards (2.8) and tops the Big South lead in double-doubles (14).
  • RU is 10-0 this year when scoring 70-plus points.
  • Ex-CU standout Junard Hartley (2007-11) is in his 1st year as Radford's Director of Basketball Operations. He was the Atlantic Sun defensive player of the year in 2010 when the Camels shared the league regular season title. Hartley ranks 2nd on CU's all-time list for assists (600) and games started (115) and is 3rd in steals (212) and minutes (3536).