Second-Half Rally Propels Trojans Past Newberry

Six Trojans Reach Double Figures

Box Score

ANDERSON, S.C. – The Anderson men’s basketball team rallied from a 16-point deficit midway through the second half for a thrilling, 111-106 win past Newberry in South Atlantic Conference men’s basketball action Wednesday night at the Abney Athletic Center.  

Anderson (10-5, 4-1 SAC) overcame the torrid outside shooting of the visiting Wolves and the loss of all-time leading scorer Brandon Young just seconds into the second half to close its three-game SAC homestand by winning its third straight contest and eight of its last 10 outings.

Newberry (6-7, 1-4 SAC), which blistered the nets from long range by shooting 54.2 percent from beyond the arc, suffered its second consecutive loss as the Trojans outraced the Wolves to improve to 7-1 at home on the season.

Trailing just 65-63, with 16:28 left in the game, the Trojans saw Newberry go on a 16-2 run over the next five minutes to open the first of two 16-point leads in the second frame. But Anderson refused to surrender, responding to the Wolves’ 87-71 lead with a 16-1 run of its own to knot the score for just the fourth time of the night, at 88 apiece with just more than five minutes on the clock.

A 3-pointer from sophomore McDowell triggered the outburst, while senior Kevis Cornwell scored six of his 20 points during the run. Newberry’s Chris Reynolds snapped the deadlock, but McDowell’s fourth trey of the night equaled score at 91-91 before the Wolves took their final lead of the night on a Jawuan Lockhart free throw.

Senior guard Oskars Ernsteins gave AU their first lead since the 4:01 mark of the first half on a 3 from the top of the circle, but Newberry trimmed AU’s advantage to a single point three times inside the final 3:28. With the Trojans leading 100-99 and the crowd on its feet, Taylor Shugart put back his own miss and Cornwell’s steal and layup boosted AU’s cushion back to five with 1:22 on the clock. Ernsteins and Denzail Jones were a perfect 4-of-4 from the line inside the final minute to seal the win.

The Wolves jumped out to a 53-48 halftime lead thanks to hot shooting and a run towards the later stages of the half. Newberry shot 16-of-34 (47.1%) from the field, with a 60 percent clip (6-of-10) from behind the arc. Newberry also made 88.7% (15-of-17) of its first half free throws, with Davis making 10-of-11 chances from the charity stripe.
 
The game went back and forth early, with the Wolves gaining a 22-17 lead with 11:43 left in the half on a Coleman Young 3-pointer. Anderson went on a 12-1 run to swing the advantage in the Trojans’ favor, as the hosts had a 29-23 lead at the 8:48 mark.
 
Newberry held a 42-33 edge on the boards, while the Trojans narrowly outshot the visitors, 51.4 percent to 50 percent from the field. Each team shot an identical 25-of-31 from the free throw line on the night.\

Six Trojans reached double figures in the scoring column, with Kevis Cornwell and Denzail Jones each tallying 20 points. Oskars Ernsteins added 19 on the strength of 5-of-9 shooting from beyond the arc, while Tyrell McDowell chipped in 14 points, Nick Trull 11 and Taylor Shugart notched 10 points and a game-high nine rebounds. Cornwell handed out a game-high five assists to go along with five steals.

Newberry’s Tony Davis, the league’s reigning Player of the Week, scored a game-high 24 points and Brandon Riley netted 20 points for the Wolves.

Anderson faces a stern test Saturday when the Trojans open a two-game conference road trip by visiting 11th-ranked and undefeated Lincoln Memorial. Tip-off in Harrogate, Tenn., is slated for 8 p.m.   

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