KENNESAW, Ga. - The
Stetson men's basketball team (4-9, 1-1) evened its Atlantic Sun Conference
record with a road victory over Kennesaw State (1-13, 0-2) on Wednesday. The Hatters scored the final 10 points of the
game to top the Owls 70-60 in the final contest of a five-game road trip.
With 2:40 left in the game, senior Adam Pegg stole the ball
from Kennesaw's Myles Hamilton and fed junior Chris Perez for a layup on the
break to give Stetson a 60-54 lead. Four
straight points by the Owls' star Markeith Cummings and a jumper by Hamilton
tied the game at 60-60 with just 1:29 to play in the contest.
With their backs against the wall, the Hatters went through
the flow of their offense to find Pegg in the post for his fifth basket of the
game. The center powered through a
Kennesaw State foul to score the bucket and then converted the three-point play
at the free throw line to start the late Hatter rally.
"The best part of the and-one was that it came through
execution of the offense," Stetson head coach Casey Alexander said. "We want Adam to stay under that
defender. [Junior] Aaron [Graham] caught
it ready to feed, he made a good pass, Adam expected somebody to be there to
help, and he played through it, and he got us a huge three-point play."
The Owls missed a three-pointer on their next possession and
Perez connected on a second-straight conventional three-point play to give the
Hatters a late six point lead. With a
couple of defensive stops, and a 4-for-4 final 20 seconds from the free throw
line for senior Joel Naburgs, Stetson concluded its 10-point run and went on to
The Hatters shot the ball efficiently all night, going
25-of-41 (61.0%) from the floor and 8-of-15 (53.3%) from beyond the arc. The field goal percentage marked the first
time Stetson shot 60 percent or better since a road win at USC Upstate on Jan.
Kennesaw State was able to stay in the game by forcing
Stetson into 18 turnovers, which the Owls turned into 20 points, and grabbing
14 offensive rebounds. KSU scored 11
second chance points, and held Stetson to just four offensive boards.
"I think it was completely the reason they were able to stay
in the game," Alexander said of KSU's offensive rebounding. "They got all of them, and I know they didn't
get a lot of first shot scores. We were much better defensively."
Working off of its defensive success against Mercer on
Monday, Stetson held Kennesaw to just 39.3 percent (24-of-61) shooting from the
floor and a dismal 18.8 percent (3-of-16) shooting from three-point range.
The only Owl who had much success shooting the ball was
Aaron Anderson, who went 5-of-10 from the floor and scored 12 points. Cummings led Kennesaw State with 19 points
and seven rebounds, while Hamilton finished with team highs of three assists
and four steals.
Perez led the Hatters with 19 points on 8-of-10 shooting
from the field, while adding six rebounds and a team-best three steals. Graham added 15 points on 6-of-8 shooting
from the floor, including three triples.
Pegg chipped in with 14 points and a game high eight rebounds. Naburgs gave Stetson four players in the
double figures, totaling 12 points, including his 4-of-4 free throw shooting to
end the game.
The Hatters, now 1-1 in A-Sun play, will return home for the
first time since Dec. 9 to host North Florida on Saturday, Jan. 5 at 3:15
p.m. Stetson will then welcome
Jacksonville to the Edmunds Center on Monday, Jan. 7 before heading back on the
road to take on ETSU and USC Upstate.
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