RALEIGH, NC – The Shaw University men's basketball team survived a close game, pulling out a 77-75 comeback victory Monday night versus the Lakers of Clayton State University in C.C. Spaulding Gymnasium for a non-conference tilt.
Shaw improves to 3-0 on the season, while Clayton State falls to 2-2 overall.
Four players scored in double-figures for Shaw, junior Khaliq Williams (Jacksonville, FL) who netted a team-best 16 points while junior DeAngelo Stephens-Bell (Jacksonville, FL) charted 15 points and senior Joshua Cassady (Raleigh, NC) tallied 13 points and seven rebounds. Senior Larry Richardson, II (Garner, NC) contributed 12 points and senior David Madol (Manchester, NH) collected a team-best 11 rebounds in the victory.
After trailing 23-15 with 11:14 remaining in the first half, the Bears raced out to a 13-6 scoring advantage to cut the Lakers lead to one point but CSU scored five unanswered point to stretch its lead to four (32-28) at the 2:36 mark.
Although both teams would exchange baskets over the next two minutes, the Lakers maintained the lead despite a tip-in from senior DeAaron Ward (Wilson, NC) that would end the first half with the score in favor of Clayton State, 38-32.
Offensively, the Bears went cold to start the second half off. Shaw found themselves trailing by 12 points with 16:42 left. The Bears would then go on to score five-straight points, however, the Lakers used a 14-8 scoring frame to lead by 13 points – their largest lead of the game as the clock showed 11:11. A three-pointer by Stephens-Bell sparked the Bears comeback as he would score five consecutive points to cut the deficit.
The Bears continued to fight down the stretch when Richardson, II threw down a dunk that got the fans off their feet's in Spaulding. From there, Shaw was able to close the gap and take the lead for the first time since the first half on a layup from Williams and a clutch three-pointer from Stephens-Bell with 1:39 left to play.
The lead would change twice before a free-throw from Jaumonee Byrd tied the contest at 75-75. With 31 seconds remaining, Shaw got off a shot attempt and Clayton State got the rebound but a deflection from Williams resulted in him going to the line for two as .5 seconds remained on the clock. Williams would sink both free-throws to secure the 77-75 win.
Shaw will return to action on Nov. 25 at the Cesar Odio Thanksgiving Classic hosted by Barry University on Friday, Nov. 25 against the Bucs at 7 p.m. before taking on Young Harris (Nov. 26) at 4 p.m.
Visit www.shawbears.com for the most up-to-date information on Shaw men's basketball and its 11 varsity sports.