Drayton Scores Career-High but Eagles Lose to App State
STATESBORO, Ga. Donald Sims scored a career-high 29 points and Isaac Butts also had career-highs of 17 points and 19 rebounds as Appalachian State handed Georgia Southern a 95-82 defeat at Hanner Fieldhouse Monday night (Feb. 2). The Eagles fell to 7-13 overall and 5-7 in the SoCon South Division while App State improved to 9-11, 6-6 in the North.
Midway through the first half, Julian Allen (Waterbury, CT/Garden City CC) converted an old-fashioned three-point play to give the Eagles a 21-18 lead. From there Kellen Brand hit consecutive jumpers to cap a 15-6 run putting App State ahead 33-27.
Trumaine Pearson (Stuart, FL/Allen County CC) nailed a jumper to make it a four-point game. The Mountaineers went on an 11-4 run (including a streak of nine unanswered) to close out the first half and lead 44-33.
Butts had 12 boards at the half while Sims had 19 points including four 3s - to lead the Mountaineers. Georgia Southern actually out-shot ASU 41.9 percent to 37.5, but was out-rebounded 27-18 and 10-2 on the offensive end.
“I’m not so concerned with the way they played, I was more worried about the way we played in the first half,” said Eagles head coach Jeff Price. “I just think we didn’t give ourselves a chance in the first half. We were lack-luster... We didn’t rebound the ball.”
The Eagles charged back during the first four minutes of the second half. Ben Drayton III (St. Marys/Camden County) hit a 3-pointer to start the scoring. Allen hit another jumper and Tyler Troupe (Gallatin, TN/Iowa Western CC) nailed two field goals. When Drayton hit a jumper then later nailed a 3’ the Eagles were down 56-53 with 13:13 remaining.
After trading baskets, App State used an 8-2 run to pull away for good.
“When you have an experienced team you want to see your team take steps forward. I thought we did that with Wofford and Furman (at home),” stated Price. “Last weekend we had a tough road trip. I expected it to be tough but you always want to get a win or two. I thought we took some steps back today... Other people have had answers for him (Isaac Butts). We could have done a better job against him.”
Drayton scored a career-high 22 points, hitting 8-of-14 field goals and two from beyond the arc. The true-freshman guard also recorded three of the team’s eight steals in 30 minutes.
“He’s aggressive with the ball (Drayton), but we have other guys that need to step up and they’re not doing it right now,” said Price.
Allen finished with 16 points while Antoine Johnson (Atlanta/Westlake) and Sandy Perry (Perth Amboy, N.J./Barton County CC) scored 10 each. It was the first time in nine games Perry scored in double-figures.
Overall the Eagles shot 44.8 percent and went 18-of-27 at the free throw line. ASU shot 68 percent in the second half, 49.2 for the game, and hit 22-of-28 at the free throw line. The Mountaineers finished with a 45-34 edge on the glass.
Three other Mountaineers joined Sims and Butts in double-figures. Sims hit 9-of-15 from the field, including 6-of-9 from long distance. Seven of Butts’ 19 rebounds came on the offensive end.
Georgia Southern continues a five-game in 10-day stretch on Thursday (Feb. 5). The Eagles will play host to Elon, tipoff scheduled for 7:30 p.m.
- Category: Men's Basketball
- Published on Monday, 02 February 2009 00:15