Jan. 19, 2008
Greenville, S.C. - Alex Opacic equaled a career-high with 20 points to lead three Paladins in double figures as Furman downed the College of Charleston 74-66 in Southern Conference men's basketball action Saturday evening at Timmons Arena.
Furman improved to 3-15 overall and 2-7 in SoCon play while Charleston dipped to 9-9 overall and 4-4 inside the league. The victory snapped Furman's six-game skid against the Cougars.
The Paladins shot 50.0% from the field in the first half to build a 15-point cushion before settling for a 37-26 halftime advantage. Noah States netted the first five points of the second half and Justin Dehm buried a three-pointer to up the lead to 45-31 with 18:24 left.
Trailing 47-37 with under 16 minutes remaining, Marcus Hammond scored eight points to key a 14-4 Cougar run to trim the Furman lead to 54-51 with 11:21 left. After the teams traded baskets, Opacic converted a layup and Connor Nolte drained a trey from the top of the key to push the lead back to eight.
Charleston cut the Paladins advantage back to six on three occasions, but Justin Dehm converted four free throw attempts and notched his second three-pointer of the game in the final 4:06 to help Furman hold on for the eight-point triumph.
Opacic connected on 7-of-15 field goal attempts for his career-high 20 points while adding nine rebounds. Dehm tallied 12 points, all in the second half, and Noah State added 11 points and six rebounds. Darryl Evans contributed a career-best nine points off of the bench. Tony Anderson chipped in with seven points and seven assists without committing a turnover in 31 minutes of play.
The Paladins, who were charged with a season-low six turnovers, shot 46.7% (28-60) from the floor and 38.9% from beyond the arc. Furman converted 11-of-13 chances at the charity stripe.
Tony White Jr. led the Cougars with 16 points on 5-of-9 shooting from the field, including 3-of-7 beyond the arc. Hammond and Dustin Scott each added 11 points while Jermaine Johnson grabbed a game-high 10 rebounds.
Charleston shot 44.3% from the floor, but connected on just 8-of-27 treys. The Cougars, who shot 63% from the floor in the second half, attempted only five foul shots on the night. Each team grabbed 34 rebounds and recorded three blocked shots.
Furman took advantage of 11 Cougar turnovers to score 13 points off of miscues. The Paladins also held a 40-30 edge in scoring in the paint.
Charleston returns home to host UNC Greensboro at the John Kresse Arena on January 24, at 7 p.m. Furman concludes a four-game homestand by entertaining Appalachian State at 7 p.m. on Thursday.