ETTRICK, VA – In a tale of two halves, the Shaw University men's basketball team's second half rally came up short against region-ranked Virginia State University in a 96-87 decision Wednesday night in Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) cross division contest at the VSU Multipurpose Center.
The Bears dip to 11-11 overall and 6-7 in conference play while the Trojans (20-3) remain undefeated in league action at 12-0 on the year.
Junior Amir Hinton (Philadelphia, PA) fouled out with under 30 seconds remaining in regulation but was still able to notch 43 points (11-22), eight rebounds and five assists while junior Derrick Randolph (Chicago, IL) tallied a season-high 29 points, five assists, three steals and two rebounds.
After connecting just 10-of-28 shots in the first half, the Bears found themselves in a slump after trailing by 16 points (42-26) with 1:32 left in the opening stanza. However, Randolph would end the half on a high for Shaw after scoring eight unanswered points including a 3-pointer at the buzzer to pull the Bears within eight, 42-34 to the Trojans at the break.
Although the Trojans controlled the first half, Shaw put up a fight in the second stanza including an 8-0 run at the 10:51 mark that pulled Shaw within three points (63-57) but VSU continued to roll after gathering a 13-point lead capped off by a 3-pointer from Brandon Holley with 6:28 left.
Despite a double digit deficit, Shaw would not give up as the Bears cut the Trojans lead to four points after a layup from Hinton with 32 seconds left but that would ultimately be the closest Shaw would get as VSU hit four-straight free throws to secure the win.
Shaw finished the night shooting 42.9-percent (27-63) from the field, 26.9-percent (7-26) from the 3-point line and 76.5-percent (26-34) from the charity stripe.
VSU finished the night with a shooting percentage of 58.8 percent while connecting 10-of-17 from long distance and 26-of-31 from the free throw line. The Trojans was led by Cedric Wiggins with 21 point and 10 assists while Jahmere Howze tallied 20 points and six rebounds. Andrew Corum put up 18 points and eight rebounds while Jalen Jackson and Holley registered 13 and 11 points, respectively.
Shaw will return to action Saturday, Feb. 9 at Livingstone College for a CIAA Southern Division contest. Tip-off is slated for 2 p.m. at New Trent Gymnasium.
For the most up-to-date information on Shaw basketball and its 13 varsity sport teams, please visit www.shawbears.com.