CLINTON, S.C. – Charleston Southern led wire-to-wire and by as many as 29 points en route to a convincing 73-52 win over Presbyterian on Thursday at the Templeton Center. The victory was the Bucs' 11th straight over the Blue Hose.
CSU (6-12, 2-5 Big South) jumped out to a 11-0 lead, built a 20-point advantage by the 4:38 mark of the opening half and was never threatened. Freshman Christian Keeling posted his second double-double with 24 points and a career-high 11 rebounds to lead the way. The Bucs also bottled up PC (4-14, 0-7 Big South) defensively, allowing 36 percent shooting overall, including just 27 percent in the first half.
CSU head coach Barclay Radebaugh continues to be encouraged by the progress his young team has shown over the last several weeks. The Bucs play host to Longwood on Saturday in Charleston.
"I thought we played well, particularly for the first 30 minutes," Radebaugh said. "Just great movement on the defensive end and a great scouting report by the assistant coaches. We felt we could guard them coming into the game and changing defensively has really helped us a lot. Adding that new zone has really helped us a lot. We're making a lot of progress."
Javis Howard added 14 points and Rae Robinson chipped in ten to join Keeling in double figures. Robinson buried three three-pointers in the opening 4:11 to spark CSU to a 14-2 edge. Patrick Wallace drained two first half treys of his own, a positive sign for the Bucs' top two long-range threats.
"I told BJ and Ahmad and the rest of our staff at the beginning, if Rae and Pat can come out and hit some shots, we'll get off to a great start," Radebaugh said. "Sure enough, they were so aggressive and they hit a couple of big shots and certainly got the whole tempo set for us offensively. That's their job. When Pat and Rae make shots like that, we're tough to guard."
CSU returns home to play Longwood on Saturday, with tipoff at the Buc Dome set for 5:30 p.m.