No. 24 Anderson Gets Past Tusculum behind Jones' 29February 15, 2012
GREENEVILLE, Tenn. – Reigning South Atlantic Conference Player of the Week Denzail Jones scored a game-high 29 points to help the 24th-ranked Anderson men’s basketball team fend off Tusculum, 75-72, in conference action Wednesday night at Pioneer Arena.
Anderson (19-4, 14-1) clinched at least a tie for second place in the conference with its fifth straight win and has won 12 of its last 13 contests, while sweeping the season series with the Pioneers for the second consecutive year.
Tusculum fell to 8-15 overall and 5-10 in the league, while dropping its third straight decision and seventh of its last eight.
Neither team was able to build more than a four-point lead during the first 15 minutes of the contest, with the Trojans edging out to a 35-28 advantage on a traditional three-point play by sophomore guard Chandler Hash with 4:25 left in the opening half.
After the Pioneers trimmed the lead to three, Jones and guard Nick Trull each scored two to set the halftime margin at 41-34.
Leading, 47-45, with 15:14 left in the game, the Trojans went on a 13-3 run to claim their largest lead of the game at 60-48 on a trey from Hash. Jones ignited the outburst and senior Jo’el Lamb fueled the run by scoring six points in a three-minute span.
But the homestanding Pioneers refused to surrender, countering with a 13-4 run to pull within 64-61 with just less than five minutes on the clock. Tusculum edged within 67-65 on a pair of free throws from Darius Carter with 2:30 remaining, but TC would get no closer as Jones scored the final six points for the Trojans.
Jones’ effort was just two shy of his career-high set just two weeks ago and the junior also pulled down a game-high eight rebounds, handed out three assists and grabbed three steals. Hash added 13 points and three assists.
Senior guard Kevin Vest led Tusculum with 21 points and dished out a game-high seven assists, while senior center Tommy Klempin chipped in 14 points and a team-high seven rebounds. Senior guard Justin Steigerwald added 13 points.
The 24th-ranked Trojans close out their regular-season road schedule with a Saturday night visit to eighth-ranked Lincoln Memorial. Tip-off versus the Railsplitters is slated for 8 p.m.