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Lakers get road victory over Lander

From staff reports

Leading by eight points with 9:21 remaining, the Clayton College & State University men's basketball team went on a 13-3 run over a six-minute span to cruise to a 70-57 Peach Belt Conference road win over Lander University at Horne Arena in Greenwood, SC.

Junior Darien Chavis ignited the run with a three-pointer at the 8:35 mark, giving the Lakers an 11-point, 59-48 lead. Senior Craig Butts capped the stretch with two straight baskets, four of his game-high 20 points. His second basket with 4:40 remaining gave Clayton State an 18-point, 69-51, lead with 2:49 remaining and sealed the victory.

"We had a nice run in the second half, fueled by our defensive pressure," said head coach Gordon Gibbons. "Anytime you can get a road conference win, it's an accomplishment. After three straight road games, we finally get back home on Wednesday, but it will be another tough one against Columbus (State)."

With the win, Clayton State improved to 12-3 on the season and 2-2 in the Peach Belt Conference. Lander falls to 4-10 overall and 1-3 in the league.

The Lakers will return to action on Wednesday, hosting Columbus State University in a 7:30 p.m. game.

Clayton State led the entire second half of Saturday's game after leading 35-29 at halftime. The Lakers took the lead for good in the first half at the 10:42 mark on a three-pointer by senior Kevin Young, giving the Lakers an 18-15 lead.

Butts' 20 points came on 9-of-11 shooting from the field and went along with a game high nine rebounds. His effort was one point shy of tying his career high, set earlier this season against Voorhees.

Chavis added 15 points, hitting 6-of-8 from the floor, including 3-of-4 from three-point territory. He also had five assists, four rebounds and three steals. Junior B.J. Puckett chipped in 12 points.

Lander freshman Emanuel Hodrea (Norcross, GA) led the Bearcats with 10 points and nine rebounds, followed by sophomore guard J.T. Greene (Greer, SC) with nine points.

Clayton State shot 54 percent (27-of-50) from the field, its second best shooting percentage on the season, the Lakers shot 55 percent from the field in the team's PBC-opening win over the University of North Florida. The Bearcats shot 45 percent (21-of-47) from the field and outrebounded the Lakers 29-28 but did commit 14 turnovers compared to 12 for Clayton State.

The Lakers' 13-point win gives the program a 3-5 record all-time against the Bearcats and is the second straight win over Lander after winning 86-72 last year in Morrow.

Lander 80, CCSU 70 (women): Lander University's Quiannta Mauney scored her first basket of the game with 1:54 remaining Saturday, draining a three-pointer and then came back 28 seconds later to hit another to lead the Bearcats to an 80-70 win over Clayton State.

at Horne Arena in Greenwood, SC.

Mauney's first three-pointer gave Lander a 72-68 lead with 1:54 remaining. After a senior April Taylor (Memphis, TN) basket, Mauney (Spartanburg, GA) came right back and gave the Bearcats a five-point lead, 75-70, with 1:26 remaining with another three-pointer. Lander held the Lakers scoreless in the final minute and hit five free throws to seal the victory.

Clayton State held Lander to 36 percent shooting from the field but was plagued by turnovers, as the squad committed 18 turnovers compared to only seven for the Bearcats. Clayton State matched a season high shooting percentage of 46 percent from the field but took 22 fewer shots than the Bearcats, due to turnovers and Lander's 45-41 rebounding edge.

The Lakers also hit only 61 percent (14-of-23) from the free throw line, including 53 percent (9-of-17) in the second half. Lander hit 83 percent from the line, hitting 19-of-23 attempts.

With the loss, the Lakers drop their fourth straight Peach Belt Conference game and fall to 8-7 overall and 0-4 in the league. Lander improves to 11-3 on the season and 3-1 in the Peach Belt. Clayton State will return to action on Wednesday, hosting Columbus State University in a 5:30 p.m. game.

Clayton State led by seven points, 35-28, at halftime and took its largest lead of the second half at the 16:14 mark on a basket by junior Apryl Brown (Lawrenceville, GA), giving the Lakers a six-point, 41-35 lead. Lander answered with a 9-2 run and took its first lead of the half on a basket by junior Tracy Jacobs (Shaker Heights, OH) with 11:17 remaining.

After the lead swapped back-and-forth in the next five minutes, Clayton State ran out to a five-point lead at the 6:06 mark on the second of two free throws by junior Jamika Hindsman (East Point, GA), giving the Lakers a 64-59 lead.

The Bearcats answered and after four straight free throws by junior guard Ashley Johnson (Knoxville, TN) tied the game at 67 apiece with 4:15 remaining. Jacobs gave the Bearcats a two-point lead, 69-67 with 2:30 remaining, followed by Mauney hitting her two game deciding three-pointers.

Hindsman led the Lakers with 17 points, followed by junior Brandi Catia (Jacksonville, FL) and junior Myeshia Choice (Thomasville, GA) with 13 points each. Taylor finished with 10 points. Catia had a game high eight rebounds and Hindsman had a game high five assists.

Jacobs led Lander with 26 points, followed by senior Jennifer Beamon (Milwaukee, WI) with 18 points and Johnson with 11 points. Junior Natasha Hemphill (Gaffney, SC) had a game high 11 boards, followed by Jacobs with 10 rebounds. Johnson had a game high six assists.