Hartsville, S.C. – The Coker Cobras were able to hold off the St. Andrews Knights for their second Conference Carolinas victory of the season, defeating the Knights 71-64 in men’s basketball action Thursday night.
Coker (5-4 overall, 2-1 conf.) starts 2010 where they left off in 2009 with a win, while St. Andrews (5-6, 1-3) drops their third straight contest.
Senior forward Mason Ambler (Atlanta, Ga.) notched a double-double for Coker with a team-high 13 points and a game-high 11 rebounds. Ambler also handed out a game-high six assists. Sophomore guard Delonte Davis (Roswell, Ga.) bucketed 12 points on 4-of-5 accuracy including a game-high two 3-pointers. Junior Liam Kyle (Cleveland, Ohio) was the third Cobra to reach double figures with 10 points.
SAPC junior forward Marvin Jackson (Gloucester, Va.) scored a game-high 17 points on a perfect 8-of-8 accuracy from shots inside the three-point arc. Junior center Zack Garst (Huntersville, N.C.) and sophomore point guard Aaron Christian (New Bedford, Mass.) both contributed 12 points for the Knights.
After a tight first half, Coker used a decisive 17-7 run over the first 10 minutes of the second half to gut out the victory including the first three hoops of the final stanza highlighted by a pair of baskets by Kyle. The Cobras then extended their lead to double figures for the first time on consecutive made shots by freshman forward Joe Caldwell (Lithonia, Ga.) that increased the advantage to 12 (53-41) with 10:53 on the clock. Coker maintained a multiple possession cushion over the final stretch --including its largest lead of 14 (63-49) -- before prevailing by seven.
Coker held a slim 33-28 rebounding edge while committing fewer turnovers, 17-12. St. Andrews shot an impressive 51.9% (27-of-52) from the field but only 20.0% (3-of-15) from three-point distance. The Cobras shot 48.3% (28-of-58) from the floor and 38.5% (5-of-13) from long range.
Sophomore SAPC guard Antonio Moffitt (Raleigh, N.C.) scored all nine of his points in the first half to lead all scorers into the locker room at the intermission, while junior center Marcus Connor (Charlotte, N.C.) had five of his game-high six blocks and all six of his rebounds in the opening period to keep the Knights within striking distance.
St. Andrews wraps up a three-game road swing to start 2010 at Erskine College (Due West, S.C.) in a Conference Carolinas clash scheduled to tip-off at 4 p.m. Coker concludes a two-game home stand on Saturday hosting league rival Queens University of Charlotte at 4 p.m.
**Thank you to the St. Andrews Sports Information Office for portions of the article.