GAME NOTES: The College of Charleston Cougars will try to get themselves back into the win column on Saturday as they play a pivotal Southern Conference tilt against the Davidson Wildcats at Belk Arena.
College of Charleston saw its six-game road winning streak come to an end on Thursday against Georgia Southern, as the Cougars let a four-point lead slip away in the final three minutes of the 51-47 setback.
Andrew Lawrence finished with 15 points, Anthony Thomas scored 10 and Willis Hall pulled down 11 rebounds for Charleston, which fell for the only the second time in nine games overall.
Davidson, meanwhile, moved a game in front of CofC in the South Division of the Southern Conference with a resounding win over The Citadel. De'Mon Brooks led the way with 15 points as the Wildcats rolled to a 70-38 rout.
Jake Cohen added 12 points for Davidson, which has now won three of its last four contests. Tyler Kalinoski added four steals off the bench, while 11 players scored in the blowout.
Davidson didn't let the Citadel breathe right from the start, as it forced 16 first half turnovers and scored the first seven points of the game. Overall the Wildcats finished shooting 42.1 percent after hitting at a 53.6 percent clip (15-for-28) through the first 20 minutes.
Davidson, which split two meetings with College of Charleston last season, could stay hot as it has owned the Cougars, taking 50 of the 63 all-time meetings.
After Anthony Stitt's free throw gave CofC a four-point cushion, 44-40, Georgia Southern reeled off nine straight points. Lawrence nailed a 3-pointer late to cut the deficit to two, but the Eagles hit their free throws and secured the four-point win. As a team CofC shot 34.0 percent from the floor (18-of-53) which was its second-lowest shooting percentage of the season behind the 33.3 percent clip it hit on against Anderson (S.C.) University on Dec. 13. On the season, Lawrence paces the squad with 14.0 ppg and is now three points away from recording his 1,000th career point. Stitt (11.3 ppg) and Lawrence have combined to sink more than half of the Cougars' 3-pointers, while Adjehi Baru is averaging 10.2 points and a team-best 9.1 rebounds.
Despite what happened against the Citadel, Davidson doesn't put up flashy offensive numbers, posting modest averages of 71.1 ppg on .432 shooting. The Wildcats do shoot the ball well from long range though, averaging just under 8 3-pointers per game. Brooks and Cohen are a solid one-two punch, averaging 13.6 and 13.4 ppg, respectively. Nik Cochran, the team's top distributor at 3.5 apg, can also find his own shot at 8.8 ppg.
It's hard to imagine Davidson being any better than it was on Thursday, but Belk Arena will be fired up for this pivotal conference showdown. That may be just enough to get the Wildcats by in this one.