Wingate, N.C.----The third-seeded Wingate University Bulldogs outlasted the sixth-seeded Eagles of Carson-Newman 58-51 Wednesday night in a game that no team led by double figures until the final 30 seconds. With the victory, the Bulldogs improve to 18-11 overall and advance to the Food Lion SAC Tournament semifinals Saturday against Lincoln Memorial. Carson-Newman ends its season at 15-14.
Senior guard Jaime Vaughn (Tallahassee, Fla.) had 17 points and six assists to lead the Wingate attack. Senior guard Chase Smith (Upper Marlboro, Md.) added 11 points, while junior forward Odell Turner (Charlotte, N.C.) had 10 points and 11 rebounds. Sophomore forward Deion Turman (Pittsburgh, Pa.) added six points, 11 rebounds and two blocks for the Bulldogs.
Sophomore forward Antoine Davis (Rustburg, Va.) led the Carson-Newman attack with 14 points and six rebounds. Junior guard Marcellous Perez (Jacksonville, N.C.) added nine points and four assists, while sophomore guard Ishmael Sanders (Cleveland, Tenn.) contributed eight points for the Eagles.
Both teams came out struggling from the field, with the game tied at seven 8:28 into the contest. A jumper from Vaughn and a free throw from junior forward Quan Alexander (Charlotte, N.C.) gave Wingate a 16-11 lead. The Eagles answered with a 12-5 run to take a 23-21 lead in the final minute of the half. Davis started the spurt with a triple, while capping it with a free throw. A steal and layup at the buzzer from Smith tied the game at 23 heading to intermission.
The Bulldogs scored the first four points of the second half and led the rest of the way. Wingate's lead stayed between two and six points for the first 13:40 of the half. After a layup from freshman forward Mike Tyson (Kinston, N.C.) put the 'Dogs on top by six with nine minutes remaining, senior forward Kevin Hare (Lexington, S.C.) answered with a layup to cut the lead back to four. An Alexander jumper was answered by a pair of free throws from freshman guard Jared Johnson (Springfield, Mass.) to again trim Wingate's advantage to four with seven minutes remaining.
Vaughn found Turman for a layup, while Smith added a pair of free throws to push the Wingate lead to eight at 51-43. Davis buried a jumper to get the Eagles to within five at the 3:24 mark. Turner hit a free throw on the other end, while Smith blocked a three-point attempt from Davis, then grabbed the rebound. A layup from Matilus with 1:23 to go made it 56-58. He would then draw a charge, getting the ball back for the Bulldogs in the final minute. Two Vaughn free throws gave the 'Dogs their first double-digit lead at 58-48 with 27 seconds to go.
Wingate shot 45.3 percent from the field on the night, including 51.9 percent shooting in the second half. The Bulldogs hit just two-of-12 shots from three-point range (16.7 percent). Carson-Newman shot 46.5 percent from the field, hitting five-of-14 shots from beyond the arc (35.7 percent). The Bulldogs held a 35-27 rebounding advantage, while out-scoring Carson-Newman 32-22 in the paint and 12-2 in second-chance points.
The Bulldogs advance to the SAC Tournament semifinals for the second consecutive year. Last season, Wingate defeated Catawba to advance to the championship game. The Bulldogs will meet up with the 17th-ranked Railsplitters of Lincoln Memorial Saturday in Hickory. LMU defeated Wingate in the 2011 SAC championship game.
May 10, 2012 Benson, Eagles add three to 2012-2013 signing class
February 29, 2012 Wingate outlasts Eagles in SAC Tournament opener, 58-51
February 23, 2012 Sanders, Eagles take down No. 12 Lincoln Memorial, 77-69
February 19, 2012 Newberry rallies past C-N behind hot second half shooting, 82-71
February 16, 2012 Eagles fall at Mars Hill in overtime, 96-93
February 12, 2012 Lenoir-Rhyne rides frontcourt to win over Eagles, 82-70
February 8, 2012 Sanders, Davis carry Eagles in win over Pioneers, 78-64
February 4, 2012 Eagles win streak stopped by Wingate, 78-64
February 2, 2012 Eagles hot early, often in win at Brevard, 84-63
January 28, 2012 Eagles hold off late rally to win at Catawba, 73-69
January 25, 2012 Eagle' defense stifles No. 5 LMU in upset, 64-61
January 21, 2012 Anderson starts hot to knock off Eagles, 82-70
January 18, 2012 Eagles cruise past Mars Hill, 99-73
January 15, 2012 Cold-shooting Eagles fall at Newberry
January 12, 2012 Tusculum rallies twice to beat Eagles, 67-61
January 7, 2012 Lenoir-Rhyne slides by Eagles late, 66-60
January 4, 2012 Eagles’ defense stifles Brevard, 69-55
December 17, 2011 Eubanks, Eagles pull away early against Bluefield, 99-80
December 12, 2011 Carson-Newman’s Sanders named SAC Player of the Week
December 10, 2011 Eagles cruise past Lees-McRae behind big first half, 94-73
December 7, 2011 Eagles wear down Tennessee Wesleyan, 75-60
December 4, 2011 Wingate pulls away late to hand Eagles first SAC loss, 83-74
November 30, 2011 Eagles shoot down Catawba to open SAC play, 74-66
November 26, 2011 Eagles dismantle Ohio State-Mansfield, 91-48
November 25, 2011 Sanders, Davis carry Eagles past Hiawasse, 81-58
November 24, 2011 Benson, Eagles sign Knox West's Carson Brooks for 2012-2013
November 23, 2011 Fast start leads Belmont Abbey past Eagles on Tuesday night
November 19, 2011 Short-handed Eagles fall to hot-shooting King, 79-71
November 14, 2011 Eagles' Sanders earns SAC Player of the Week honors
November 12, 2011 Sanders' late heroics lifts Eagles past Erskine in overtime, 73-70
November 9, 2011 Eagles open regular season on Friday night against King in Harrogate
November 5, 2011 ETSU tops Eagles in exhibition action, 87-59
November 4, 2011 Eagles hang tough with Tennessee in exhibition, 73-52
November 2, 2011 Sanders named preseason All-SAC; Eagles picked to finish fifth
October 15, 2011 Basketball Time: Benson, Eagles open practice Saturday morning