Rendleman's Big Effort Leads UNCW Men's Basketball To 80-75 Victory Over Blue Hens
January 2, 2012
File Photo Courtesy of Mark Campbell
WILMINGTON, N.C. -- UNCW junior forward Keith Rendleman led all scorers with 24 points and grabbed a career-high 18 rebounds to lead the Seahawks to an 80-75 Colonial Athletic Association men’s basketball victory over the University of Delaware Monday afternoon at Trask Coliseum.
The Seahawks, who won their second straight game and fifth in their last seven outings, improved to 5-7 overall and 1-1 in league play. The Blue Hens, who have dropped three in a row, are also now 5-7 overall and 1-1 in the conference.
Cedrick Williams, Adam Smith and Tanner Milson each contributed 10 points in a balanced attack for UNCW, which defeated Delaware for the eighth consecutive meeting in Wilmington. The Seahawks shot just 41.0 percent from the field but made up for it by connecting on 26 of 30 free throw attempts. UNCW also held a 43-35 rebounding advantage, and grabbed 13 offensive rebounds including several key caroms to extend possessions late in the contest.
UD sophomore guard Devon Saddler paced the Blue Hens with 22 points while adding four assists and six rebounds, as he surpassed the 20-point mark for the sixth time this season. Junior forward Jamelle Hagins (at right) tied his career-high with 21 points while leading the squad with nine rebounds, while classmate Josh Brinkley contributed 11 points and seven boards as he reached double figures for the fourth time this year. Freshman Jarvis Threatt was the fourth Blue Hen in double digits with 10 points to go with six rebounds, while Kyle Anderson scored seven points.
The game was tightly-contested throughout the first 32 minutes, as two free throws by Hagins knotted the contest at 57-57 with 7:31 to play. Rendleman answered inside to put the Seahawks back in front, but a free throw by Brinkley pulled the Blue Hens within 59-58 with 6:38 on the clock.
However UNCW took control by scoring six consecutive points, taking a 65-58 advantage on a KK Simmons leaner with 5:09 to play. The Blue Hens eventually closed to within six on a pair of Saddler free throws but Rendleman scored on a follow while getting fouled, and then hit the ensuing foul shot to make it a 70-61 game at the 3:08 mark.
Two more free throws by Saddler closed the gap to 71-65, but four straight UNCW foul shots made it a double digit game in the final minute, and the Blue Hens would not threaten from there.
“This was the first game this season that our defense really let us down,” said sixth-year Delaware head coach Monté Ross. “You just cannot give up 80 points on the road and expect to win. We have to be sharper, and make sure we get stops when we need to. Their post players really manhandled us in the second half; we allowed then to post up way too deep and gave up too many offensive rebounds.”
The game was tight early, until consecutive three-pointers by Threatt and Saddler gave the Blue Hens an 18-13 lead with 12 minutes left in the opening half. UNCW battled back to tie the game at 21-21 on two free throws by Williams, and neither team led by more than three points over the next six minutes.
The Seahawks were up 35-32 with three minutes left but a Saddler jumper, a Hagins layup in transition and a three-pointer by Anderson gave Delaware a four-point advantage with 1:48 on the clock. UNCW countered with five consecutive points, before Kelvin McNeil hit one free throw to knot the contest at 40-40 at the half.
Delaware shot 44.8 percent in the opening period while posting its second highest first half output of the season, but the Blue Hens allowed the most points in a first period as the Seahawks connected on 44.1 percent of their attempts from the floor.
Hagins scored the first four points of the second half to put Delaware back in front, but the game remained tight as an inside basket by Brinkley tied the game at 50-50 with 12:24 to play. However Milson converted a driving layup and then hit a three-pointer on the Seahawks’ next possession to give UNCW a 55-50 advantage with 10 and a half minutes remaining.
Anderson answered with a three-pointer for Delaware to spark a 7-2 UD run, as the Blue Hens tied the game at 57-57 on two free throws by Hagins with 7:31 to play. However Delaware went over five minutes without a field goal as the Seahawks took the lead for good.
The Blue Hens, who dropped to 1-6 on the road this season, return home on Wednesday to host Hofstra at 7 p.m. at the Bob Carpenter Center.
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