Men's Basketball Adds Three Signees

ANDERSON, S.C. -- Looking to build off the momentum of the school's best record in seven seasons, Anderson head men's basketball coach Jason Taylor continues to add talent and depth as he has announced three additions to the Trojans' roster. Tony Anderson, a 5-foot-11, 185-pound guard from nearby Greenville, S.C., averaged 2.4 points, 2.1 assists and 1.2 rebounds for Coach Jeff Jackson’s Furman Paladins last season, while seeing action in 29 contests. During the 2007-08 campaign, Anderson appeared in all 30 games, including earning starts in the first five contests and handed out a team-high 81 assists while averaging 3.5 points and 1.5 rebounds per game. As a sophomore, he played a pivotal role coming off the bench to average 4.5 points and 1.0 rebound per game while recording 52 assists. Anderson, a 2005 graduate of J.L. Mann High School in Greenville, was a two-time all-state selection, three-time all-region and all-county honoree while scoring more than 1,600 points in his high school career for Coach Jeff Craft’s Patriots. He was a finalist for South Carolina Mr. Basketball his senior year after leading J.L. Mann to its third consecutive conference championship and averaging 23.0 points, 5.0 assists, and 2.0 steals per game and was named region and Greenville County Player of the Year in 2005. “I am very happy Tony decided to complete his college career with the Trojans,” Taylor said. “I have followed him since he was in high school and know he will make an immediate impact for us on the basketball court and be a very good representative of our university, both on campus and in the community. He has been extremely well-coached having played for Coach Kraft at JL Mann High School in Greenville and then during his four years at Furman playing for Coach Davis and Coach Jackson. Tony is going to have a great senior season at Anderson and I am excited about coaching him.” Oscars Ernsteins is a 6-foot-5, 215-pound guard/forward, who helped lead Latvia to a 12th place finish out of a 25-team field in the 2009 World University Games. The junior averaged 14.2 points per game on the strength of 35.2 percent (19-of-54) shooting from beyond the arc in six contests, including a 28-point outburst against South Africa. He was 10-of-14 from the field and drained eight treys on the night. Ernsteins also played two seasons for Coach Mike St. John at Carl Albert State in Poteau, Okla., where he averaged 10 points and shot better than 40 percent from three-point range. “We are excited about having Oskars join our program,” Taylor added. “He played against very good competition for two years in Oklahoma and is ready to come in and contribute right away. He has great size and strength at the two-guard and his ability to shoot the basketball is something our team needs. In just a very short time on campus he made a very positive impression with everyone and is a great addition to our Trojan family.” Tyrell McDowell will redshirt this season after transferring from The Citadel in Charleston. The 6-foot-5 guard from Miami, Fla. played in 23 games while starting five contests for Coach Ed Conroy’s Bulldogs last season. He averaged 1.5 points, 1.2 boards and 0.5 assists while seeing 10 minutes of action per game. McDowell, who also played for former Trojans’ head coach Doug Novak at The Citadel, played a crucial role for the Bulldogs as a freshman, playing in all 30 games and starting 22. He ranked third on the team in 3-point field goal accuracy, shooting 40.4 percent from long range and finished 11th in the Southern Conference in both overall 3-point field goal percentage and in conference play. “I had the opportunity to see Tyrell play the last two seasons at The Citadel and know how talented he is,” Taylor noted. “And he’s a quality young man He fits in really well in what we do on the basketball court. The year off as a redshirt is going to help him take his game to another level and also allow him to excel in the classroom. Tyrell is going to be great representative for our university, both on and off the court.”
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