Balanced Attack Lifts Trojans Past Carson-Newman

Hash Connects on Career-High Seven 3-Pointers

Box Score

ANDERSON, S.C. – With four players reaching double figures in the scoring column, Anderson outpaced Carson-Newman, 85-80, in South Atlantic Conference men’s basketball action Saturday afternoon at the Abney Athletic Center.  

Anderson (10-4, 6-0 SAC) extended its win streak to four, as the Trojans claimed their fourth consecutive win past Carson-Newman, which slipped to 11-3 overall and 4-2 in the conference. The Eagles saw their win streak halted at three.

Trojan guard Denzail Jones’ third 3-pointer of the afternoon with 33 seconds left erased a one-point Carson-Newman advantage and gave Anderson an 81-79 edge – a lead the Trojans would not relinquish. After the Eagles’ Cody Henegar connected on one-of-two free throws on the other end to pull Carson-Newman within one, the senior from Tuscaloosa, Ala., followed with a pair of free throws with 3.5 seconds remaining to boost AU’s lead to 83-80.

Forward Bo Holston intercepted the Eagles’ inbounds pass and junior Chandler Hash drained two from the charity stripe with 1.1 seconds remaining to set the final margin.     

The two teams entered the contest with each riding a three-game win streak and featured four of the top 10 scorers in the conference, with Jones leading the league. Carson-Newman junior forward Antoine Davis ranks second and teammate Ishmael Sanders is third. Hash entered the game ranked ninth in the SAC.

Hash led all scorers with 25 points, including 16 in the second half. The 6-foot sharpshooter recorded a career-high seven 3-pointers, leading the Trojans to a season-best 15 treys for the game. Jones added 17 points and dished out a season-high seven assists, while junior Kyle Sledge notched AU’s first double-double of the season with 12 points and 10 rebounds. Holston netted 10 points and recorded two blocked shots, with center Chris Ross chipping in seven points, six rebounds and notching a career-best four blocked shots.
 
Preseason First-team All-SAC selections Davis and Sanders paced the Eagles with 21 points apiece, with Henegar tossing in 16 and sophomore guard Jared Johnson adding 15.   

The Trojans won the long-range shooting duel, connecting on a season-best 62.5 percent (15-of-24) from beyond the arc, including 10 in the decisive second half. The Eagles were 14-of-26 (53.8 percent) from long range.

The contest featured eight ties and 16 lead changes, including 13 in the second half.
AU bolted out to its largest lead of the game, at 12-3, at the 16:06 mark of the opening half with Jones and Hash combining to score nine points.

But Carson-Newman battled back behind a 14-6 run over the next eight minutes to trim the Trojan lead to just 20-19 and claimed its first lead, 21-20, on a layup by Davis with 7:27 left in the half. The Eagles’ lead was brief, however as AU reclaimed the edge 17 seconds later on a 3-pointer from Myson Jones from deep in the right corner.

The Eagles snapped a 25-25 tie and closed the final 6:05 of the half with a 13-6 run to hold a 38-31 lead at the break.    

Sledge opened the second half by scoring four straight points to spark a 12-1 run by the Trojans, with the lead changing hands 11 times over the final 16:39 of the game and neither team was able to build more than a five-point lead the rest of the way.  

Preseason league favorite Wingate invades the Abney Center on Wednesday for an 8 p.m. tip-off. The Trojans and Bulldogs are each undefeated in conference play and tied atop the league standings in the league standings, each at 6-0.

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