ORANGEBURG, S.C. – South Carolina State's Donte Wright hit a three-pointer with 4.2 seconds remaining in overtime to lift the Bulldogs over Charleston Southern, 91-88, Tuesday afternoon at the Smith-Hammond-Middleton Memorial Center.
S.C. State (3-9) rallied from nine points down with 2:08 left in regulation to force the extra session. The Bulldogs converted six free throws and took advantage of a CSU (4-4) turnover and two missed front ends of one-and-one attempts to eventually move ahead, 81-80, with 39 seconds remaining. Jamaal David then sunk a free throw to tie the score at 81 and bring about overtime.
The Bucs never led in overtime and trailed 88-84 before Christian Keeling tallied four straight points to force the contest's seventh and final tie. Wright, who ranked fifth nationally in threes attempted and made entering play, buried a triple from the left corner for the winning score. Javis Howard missed a 30-footer at the final buzzer to seal the outcome.
"We just didn't execute late," CSU head coach Barclay Radebaugh said afterward. "We missed two front ends of one-and-ones, turned the ball over and took a rushed shot. One of our strengths so far this year has been our ability to handle pressure situations and certainly we didn't do that today."
How It Happened
- Janai Rayner-Powell recorded eight of S.C. State's ten points during the 10-0 spurt that forced overtime. Rayner-Powell was held to just two points before making a jumper at the 1:40 mark and then went a perfect 6-for-6 at the foul line to spark the Bulldogs. He also scored on a drive for the first points of overtime.
- CSU led for 30:25 and pushed a 42-38 halftime advantage to 11 with 15:16 left. S.C. State responded to take one-point leads at the 9:14 and 6:59 marks but Phlandrous Fleming Jr. scored on the ensuing possession both times to immediately put CSU back on top.
- Fleming notched 16 of his career-high 21 points in the second half and along with Travis McConico, sparked a 12-2 run that appeared to give CSU control. Fleming made back-to-back jumpers and McConico scored on an offensive put back and drilled a triple to highlight a surge that put the Bucs ahead 77-68 with 3:09 remaining.
- The first half featured a quick back-and-forth pace that produced four ties and eight lead changes. CSU shot 53 percent overall in the opening stanza and connected on 6-of-12 threes.
Inside the Numbers
- CSU shot a season-best (against Division I competition) 54.7 percent overall and sunk a season-high ten threes.
- Fleming paced the Bucs with 21 points, while Keeling added 20, six rebounds and five assists. It was Keeling's second consecutive 20-point game and the 12th of his career.
- McConico recorded 17 points on the strength of five threes before fouling out late in regulation.
- James Richardson powered S.C. State with a career-high 26 points. Wright and Damani Applewhite added 14 each, while Rayner-Powell delivered 10 of his 12 points in the waning stages of regulation and in overtime.
- The Bulldogs overcame the Bucs' hot shooting thanks in part to a 12-point advantage (20-8) in made free throws and a 16-8 edge in second chance points.
- The contest was the first meeting between the two programs since December 20, 1999. S.C. State leads the all-time series, 21-12.
CSU plays host to Eastern Kentucky, out of the Ohio Valley Conference, Friday at the Buc Dome. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.