SOUTH PRINCE GEORGE, Va. — Freshman Deon Joyner/North Charleston, South Carolina scored a team-high 11 points off the bench to lead NJCAA Division II No. 14 Richard Bland College to a 78-72 come-from-behind men’s basketball victory past NJCAA Division I No. 18 Cape Fear (N.C.) Community College on Saturday afternoon during the Richard Bland Classic at Statesman Hall. Sophomore Deandre Clark/Orange added 10 points, including two late three-point field goals, for the host Statesmen (6-2), who rallied from a 13-point second-half deficit. The visiting Sea Devils (4-2) were led by Trae Bryant with a game-high 20 points. Richard Bland will play on the road at Wake Technical (N.C.) Community College next Tuesday, Nov. 22 at 6 p.m. in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Richard Bland scored the first four points of the game for an early lead at 18:02, getting 1-2 free throws by sophomore Jaquan Wooten/Kinston, North Carolina and a conventional three-point play by freshman Ricky Hicks/Bronx, New York via a layup and free throw. Cape Fear tied it at 4-4, before the Statesmen used a 9-0 run to lead 13-4 at 14:21, getting baskets from sophomore Gevon Arrington/Petersburg, classmate Jalen Jackson/Plainfield, New Jersey and Clark ahead of another three-point play courtesy a layup and free throw by freshman Tim Bing Jr./District Heights, Maryland. The hosts led 23-14 at 10:09 after a three-pointer and a layup from Joyner, but the Sea Devils battled back with a 10-0 run to take their first lead at 24-23 with 6:32 on the first-half clock. The two teams traded the lead three more times before Richard Bland surged to a 35-33 lead at the intermission, sparked by a three-pointer from sophomore Myles Markland/Petersburg and 4-6 free throws from freshman Lumumbah Bataille/Brooklyn, New York.
Richard Bland led 38-36 early in the second half at 19:14 following 1-2 free throws and a slam dunk by Wooten, but consecutive three-pointers by Cape Fear, the latter by Bryant, made it 42-38 at 18:26. The Sea Devils still led 48-44 at 14:47 after a jumper by freshman Stanley Taylor/Petersburg, however, the visitors extended their lead to 57-44 at 11:47 with nine unanswered points. Cape Fear still led 61-49 with 8:57 left to play before the Statesmen began their game-ending comeback for the victory. A pair of free throws by freshman Robert Smith/Hampton at 8:44 started things, and Clark’s consecutive three-pointers made it a two-point game at 63-61 with 6:16 left, before Arrington’s three-pointer put Richard Bland ahead 65-64 with 4:19 to go. Arrington added a layup at 3:23 to make it 67-64, but the Sea Devils managed to tie the contest at 69-69 with 2:12remaining. The Statesmen closed the game with a 9-3 run for their hard-earned triumph. The final points included a free throw by Wooten, a steal and layup by Hicks, a basket by Joyner and four-straight free throws by Clark and Arrington, respectively.
Joyner led Richard Bland with his 11 points, adding four rebounds. Clark finished with 10 points, including the two huge three-pointers and the two late free throws. Arrington, Hicks, and Wooten each contributed nine points, with Arrington added a team-high seven rebounds, Hicks adding game-highs of six steals and four assists and Wooten adding five rebounds. Freshman Brandon Henry/Chester had eight points, off the bench. RBC shot 41% (25-61) from the field, including 25% (5-20) on three-pointers, and 61% (23-38) from the free throw line. The Statesmen forced 21 turnovers that they converted into a 26-17 advantage in points off turnovers, while out-rebounding Cape Fear 40-38, including 18 on the offensive end, for a 19-4 advantage in second chance points.
Bryant led Cape Fear with his game-high 20 points, adding seven rebounds, while Jacque Brown added 12 points and a game-high eight rebounds. The Sea Devils shot 45% (21-47) from the field, including 28% (5-18) on three-pointers, and 61% (25-41) at the line, as well.
Richard Bland was playing Cape Fear for just the fourth time ever in the sport of men’s basketball, and the Statesmen now lead the young series, 3-1.
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