College men’s basketball: Catawba pulls out home win
Published 12:47 am Thursday, February 23, 2023
SALISBURY — Javeon Jones scored 31 points, including a go-ahead basket with 16 seconds remaining, as Catawba won a see-saw game over Coker 84-81 on Wednesday night at Goodman Gym. The Catawba Indians move to 20-6 overall and 15-2 in the South Atlantic Conference, setting a program mark for conference wins in a season. With a win on Saturday, Catawba would tie Lincoln Memorial for the best league mark. The Cobras fall to 12-15 and 6-11.
Jones scored the first five points to help Catawba to a quick 7-0 lead, but Coker would control the game after the opening minutes and went on a 12-0 run to go up 12-7. The Cobras would lead by as many as 17 points at 44-27 with just under a minute to go before the break. Catawba would rally to get back in the game, scoring the final nine points to close within 44-36.
Catawba continued its rally early in the second half and went on top after a three-pointer from Kris Robinson at 51-50 with 16:04 left. When Peyton Gerald scored on a put-back the Indians were up 75-61 with 7:11 remaining.
Coker wasn’t done and heated up from long range. Tate Mulkey canned four three-pointers in a span of three minutes and lifted the Cobras to an 82-79 edge. Jamie Muldowney’s jumper pushed the Coker advantage to 84-79 with 1:21 remaining.
Kaleb Wallace followed his own shot with a layup then fed DeAngelo Epps for a dunk following a rebound to cut Catawba’s deficit to 84-83 with 37 ticks on the clock. Catawba sent Coker to the line and Xavier Moultrie missed the front end of a one-and-one. Epps cleared the rebound and Jones picked up a loose ball after a near steal and put Catawba ahead.
Jones came up with a steal with 12 seconds to go and Epps canned a pair of free throws with 10 seconds remaining to give the Indians the 84-81 edge. Coker had two chances at a tying three-pointer, but Mulkey missed and Muldowney’s last chance was blocked by Gerald.
Jones netted 22 of his 31 points in the opening half to keep Catawba close and posted six steals for the game. He was a perfect 6-for-6 on three-pointers and made 9-of-15 overall. Epps followed with 17 points, making 9-of-10 at the line, and grabbing nine rebounds.
Coker got 20 points from Mulkey with Jordan Jones added 16 points and nine assists. Muldowney chipped with 14 points and eight rebounds, while Mahmaoud Bangura had 13 points and eight boards before fouling out with 16 seconds remaining.
Catawba shot 54 percent in the second half and was solid at the line, making 17-of-23 (74 percent). Coker was 13-of-23 (57 percent) at the line. Catawba used a big scoring margin on turnovers, out-scoring the Cobras 32-14.
Catawba closes out the regular-season at home on Saturday, hosting Tusculum at 4 p.m. following the women’s contest.