Trojans Outrun Newberry for Third Straight Win

Box Score

NEWBERRY, S.C. – Using a second-half run and late defensive heroics, Anderson won its third consecutive contest by outpacing Newberry, 101-98, in South Atlantic Conference men’s basketball action Wednesday night at Eleazer Arena.  

Senior Taylor Shugart, the reigning SAC Player of the Week, scored seven points in the final 3:16 and senior guard Jo’el Lamb swiped three of his game-high eight steals in the final 89 seconds to help lift the Trojans to the win.  

Anderson (10-3, 5-0 SAC) wrapped up a four-game road swing by earning its ninth victory in the last 11 contests and handing Newberry (7-5, 2-3 SAC) its second consecutive setback.

Shugart knotted the score for just the fourth time of the night, at 93-93, with a layup and followed by connecting on one-of-two from the free throw line to give AU a slim one-point edge with 2:09 left.

The Wolves’ Quayshun Hawkins regained the advantage for Newberry with two from the charity stripe and following a miss by the Trojans, Newberry had an opportunity to go ahead by two possessions, but Lamb stole the ball and senior guard Nick Trull drained one-of-two free throws to even the score for the final time, at 95 apiece. 

Lamb recorded his second consecutive steal on the next possession and Shugart followed an AU miss with a tip-in, giving the Trojans a 97-95 lead with 1:12 on the clock. However, Newberry freshman forward Tomas Tomasson responded with his seventh 3-pointer of the night to give the Wolves a brief, 98-97, lead before Shugart dropped in another short jumper, giving the Trojans a lead they would not surrender.     
Lamb helped seal the win with his career-best eighth steal with just 13 seconds remaining and junior guard Denzail Jones set the final margin with a pair of free throws, but not before Newberry’s Dondray Walker misfired on a potential game-tying trey with eight seconds left.  

Early in the contest, the score was tied briefly, at 9-9, with less than four minutes gone, while the Trojans grabbed a brief 13-12 lead on a jumper by Jones at the 15:41 mark, but Newberry countered with an 8-3 spurt over a three-minute span to claim a 20-16 advantage.

Down by four, the Trojans responded by reeling off a 19-6 outburst to take a 35-26 edge, with senior Nick Trull taking an assist from guard Chandler Hash and converting a traditional three-point play to spark the rally. A Lamb tip-in gave AU the lead, with senior forward Tyrell McDowell leading the surge with five points, as seven different Trojans contributed to the breakout.

The homestanding Wolves, boasting a stellar 6-1 home record on the season, chipped away at Anderson’s lead, overtaking the Trojans late in the half, as Tomasson scored five of his 17 first-half points  in the final moments of the frame to lift Newberry to a 52-46 advantage at intermission.

With the score tied, 59-59, at the 16:28 mark, Anderson scored eight unanswered points in less than two minutes behind four points apiece from Jones and Shugart. 

Newberry trimmed the Trojan lead to one on a pair of occasions and reclaimed a brief, 82-81, lead with 7:33 left on a 3-pointer from Owen Jacobs, but Jones answered on the other end for AU to give the Trojans an 83-82 edge at the 7:19 mark, setting up the frantic final minutes.

Trull finished with a game-high 25 points and four assists, while Shugart equaled his season-high with 23 points and pulled down a game-high 14 rebounds for his second straight double-double. Jones added 20 points and handed out a career-best seven assists. Sophomore Chandler Hash chipped in 15 points. 

Tomasson scored 24 points, with Hawkins netting 19 and Savad Garner posting 16 for the Wolves.

With the win, Anderson kept pace in the conference with nationally top-ranked Lincoln Memorial. The Trojans open a two-game South Atlantic Conference homestand when the No. 1 and undefeated Railsplitters invade the Abney Center Saturday afternoon for a 4 p.m. contest.

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