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Slow Start Costly As Furman Falls At Saint Peter’s In CIT Semifinals, 77-51

Kris Acox (photo by: Citadel Media Relations)
Kris Acox (photo by: Citadel Media Relations)

Jersey City, N.J. -- Saint Peter's raced out to a 15-0 lead and shot 56% for the game en route to a 77-51 victory over Furman in the semifinal round of the Postseason Tournament (CIT) on Wednesday night at the Yanitelli Center in Jersey City, N.J.

With the victory, the Peacocks (22-13) advanced to face Texas A&M Corpus Christi in Friday night's CIT Championship Game. Furman concluded its season at 23-12.

Nnamdi Enechionyia connected on 7-of-8 shots, including 4-of-5 from three-point range, to lead Saint Peter's with 18 points, while center Quadir Welton posted a double-double with 11 points and 16 rebounds for the Peacocks. Chazz Patterson and Antwon Portley combined to hit on 7-of-11 three-point tries to tally 13 points apiece.

Saint Peter's held Furman scoreless for the opening 7:38 and without a field goal until the 11:21 mark of the first half. The Paladins made good on just 7-of-28 first half field goal attempts, while Saint Peter's drained seven first-half threes to open up a 34-8 lead. Furman finished the period on an 11-3 run to trim the deficit to 37-19 at the break.

The Paladins extended their run to a 19-5 spurt as they cut the lead to 39-27 on back-to-back treys from Daniel Fowler that forced a SPU time out with 17:38 to play. The Peacocks responded with a 21-4 run, including four triples from Enechionyia, to open up a 60-31 advantage with 11:10 to go. A 12-2 Furman run brought the Paladins back within 19 points, but they were unable to get any closer the rest of the way.

Saint Peter's hit on 28-of-50 shot and made 13-of-27 three-point tries, while holding Furman to 36.5% shooting from the floor. The Peacocks managed a 38-24 advantage on the glass and their bench outscored the Furman reserves 25-3.

Devin Sibley hit 8-of-12 shots to score a game-high 20 points for Furman. Fowler tallied 14 points and Kris Acox added 11 points and team-high seven boards in his final collegiate game.

By shooting 62.8% for the season, Acox established a new single season field goal percentage record and capped his career as Furman's leader in field goal percentage for a career at 61.3%. He scored 1,051 career points.

Jordan Caskey, Furman Sports Information