Greene County News
WILBERFORCE — The Central State Marauders lost to Washington Adventist University (Md.), 74-68, Tuesday night in the Beacom/Lewis Gymnasium.
After trailing by double-digits for most of the first half, CSU settled down and began to find momentum behind the energy of the home crowd. Jermaine Crowder hit a three pointer from the corner and Dwight Richard, Jr. fought hard for a put-back layup to cut the Shock lead down to just six, 34-28, at halftime.
“We were able to hang around thanks to our defense and made a few plays late in the first half to get back into the game,” CSU coach Joseph Price said. “It was encouraging to see our guys fight back when things weren’t going our way early on.”
The Shock regained their form and increased their lead, 46-32, when Tyrus Fleetwood hit from beyond the arc at the 14:45 mark of the second half. The Marauders methodically chipped away at the lead once again and trailed by just four after two Richard, Jr. free throws with 8:49 to play. The teams continued to trade baskets over the next four minutes with WAU managing to hold the slight edge. With 2:24 left, Richard, Jr. added two more free throws to make it a three point game, 63-60. Eric Lindsey responded for WAU with a make from the perimeter to put his team back up by six. Frank Barber III converted the traditional three-point play for the Marauders but WAU once again found points on their next trip thanks to a goal tending call against CSU. Juwuan Wilson scored on WAU’s next possession to give the Shock a 70-63 lead with 39 seconds to play and the Marauders were never able to full recover as they lost their seventh straight game.
“It was a hard-fought game and I thought our kids were extremely motivated by the fan support tonight. We just have a few more things to clean up and I think we will get back on track,” Price said. “Against a team like Washington Adventist, we couldn’t afford to make mistakes like we did tonight. We have another talented team coming in on Saturday in Miles and we have to come in with more energy and attention to detail.”
Ranked no. 17 in the NAIA national poll, WAU was led by Fleetwood’s 23 points, four assists, five rebounds and three steals. Brian Bridgeforth finished with 16 points and eight rebounds as the Shock improved to 15-3 on the season. As a team, the Shock hit 49 percent of their field goal attempts, including 46 percent from three-point range.
Richard, Jr. led the Marauders with 21 points, five rebounds and three steals. Barber III added 15 points while Jeremy Brown recorded 12 points and 11 rebounds. CSU made 42 percent of its shot attempts. The latest loss drops the Marauders to 5-10 overall.
The Marauders will continue conference play at 3 p.m. on Saturday when they host Miles College. Admission to the game is $5. Fans can purchase their tickets with cash at the Beacom/Lewis Gymnasium ticket booth prior to the game or buy online via – http://centralstate.universitytickets.com/user_pages/event_listings.asp .