RALEIGH, NC – The Shaw University men's basketball team fell at home to Claflin University on the final day of the Shaw U Classic Thursday night inside C.C. Spaulding Gymnasium for its final non-conference contest on the season and last game of 2016.
The Bears placed four players in double figures including Benji Bell (Gainesville, FL) who registered a team-best 14 points, four assists and three rebounds. DeAngelo Stephens-Bell (Jacksonville, FL) chipped in 13 points and three assists while Larry Richardson, II (Garner, NC) tallied 12 points and three rebounds. Khaliq Williams (Jacksonville, FL) hit 10 points and grabbed four rebounds in the loss.
Shaw (5-7) never led in the game as the Panthers (7-4) held a 20 point lead after a 25-12 run with 37 seconds left in the first half. The Bears would get outscored 50-34 to close out the half after shooting 50 percent (11-22) compared to Claflin' s 69 percent (20-29).
The Bears trailed by as many as 28 points with 7:52 left before trimming the deficit to 19 points but that would be the closest Shaw would get for the remainder of the contest.
For the game, Shaw shot 39.6 percent (21-53) from the field, 41.4 percent (12-29) from the 3-point line and 67.6 percent (25-37) from the foul line whereas Claflin connected 30-for-52 (57 percent) from the field, 10-of-12 (83 percent) from behind the arc and 30-for-37 (81 percent) at the charity stripe.
Austin Lawson paced the Panthers with 26 points. Benjamin Williams chipped in 16 points while Kobie Williams added 14 points and Ryan McNeill-Moses aided 11 points and a team-best seven rebounds.
Shaw will return to action on Thursday, Jan. 5 to host Virginia Union University for a Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) matchup. Tipoff is slated for 8 p.m. in C.C. Spaulding Gymnasium.
For the most up-to-date information on Shaw University men's basketball and its 11 varsity sport teams, please visit www.shawbears.com.