Feb 3, 2013
Charlotte, N.C. — The Shaw University Bears saw their nine-point halftime lead evaporate as they suffered their fourth loss in their last five games, falling 65-57 to Johnson C. Smith on Saturday night at Brayboy Gymnasium.
Leading 29-20 at halftime, the Bears were outscored 45-28 in the second half as they fall to 13-8 overall, 7-4 in the CIAA and 1-4 in the Southern Division. Johnson C. Smith improved to 14-7 overall, 7-4 in the CIAA and 3-2 in the Southern Division.
The Bears shot a season low 39.3 percent from the floor on 22-of-56 shooting, including a dismal 0-for-15 performance from three-point range.
“When you’re 39 percent from two and zero percent from three, you’re not going to win, period,” said Shaw head coach Cleo Hill, Jr.
Karron Johnson led all scorers with 26 points and seven rebounds. Curtis Hines added 13 points, five assists and three rebounds . Junius Chaney added eight points and four boards. After their top three scorers, the Bears had just 10 points from their eight-man rotation.
“I just don’t think we executed,” said Hill. “They played a 2-3 zone defense and really packed it in. They switched from a 2-3 zone defense to a 3-2 zone defense often and we just didn’t adjust.”
For the first nine minutes of the first half, the action was back-and-forth for both squads. With 11:05 remaining in the frame, the Bears held a 16-13 lead over the Golden Bulls after a layup from Johnson, who scored 10 of the first 16 points for Shaw.
The score remained the same until the 9:29 mark of the first half when Johnson C. Smith’s Emilio Parks dunked the ball to bring the Golden Bulls within one (16-15).
Shaw answered with a 7-2 run, capped off with a successful three-point play conversion from Chaney that gave the Bears a 23-17 lead with 6:56 remaining in the first period. Six seconds later, Robert Williams brought the Golden Bulls within four at 23-19.
Emilio Parks sank a free throw to cut the deficit to three at 23-20 with 4:01 left in the first half. That would be the final point of the period for the Golden Bulls, as they went ice cold from the floor for the last four minutes.
The Bears closed out the first half on a 6-0 run, which was capped off by a jumper from Johnson with one second remaining. Johnson’s buzzer-beater gave the Bears a 29-20 cushion at halftime.
The Golden Bulls opened the first seven minutes of the second half on a 17-8 run to tie the game at 37 with 12:23 remaining in the contest.
Andre Paulk stole the ball away from JCSU’s Trevin Parks and found Hines, who drove all the way to the basket for the slam dunk. The bucket put the Bears back in front 39-37 with 11:48 left in the game.
Twenty-five seconds later, JCSU’s Robert Williams converted a layup to tie the contest at 39. After the Bears missed a shot on their end, the Golden Bulls took a 41-39 lead after Parks buried two free throws.
The Bears finally broke the 40-point plateau when Paulk buried two free throws to tie the contest at 41 with 10:33 remaining.
With the game tied at 41, the Golden Bulls responded with a 9-3 run over the next two minutes to build a 50-44 lead with 8:35 left.
Chaney, who received a nice pass inside from Derrick Hunter, brought the Bears within four with a dunk (50-46) at the 7:50 mark of the period.
The Golden Bulls responded with an 8-2 run to pull ahead by 10 at 58-48 with 5:16 remaining. The 10-point margin was the largest lead of the evening for Johnson C. Smith.
The Bears answered with a 9-4 spurt of their own, capped off with a three-point play from Hines, to cut the score to 62-57 with 1:43 left. Hines drained the free throw after drawing the contact on a layup attempt.
Shaw played tight defense and forced the Golden Bulls to a shot clock violation on the ensuing possession, giving them the ball back with 1:07 remaining. Unfortunately, the Bears couldn’t take advantage of the key defensive stop as Johnson missed a three-pointer and the ball went out of bounds in favor of the Golden Bulls with 44 seconds left.
Ten seconds later, JCSU’s Richard Daniels sank one of his two free throws to put the Golden Bulls up 63-57.
Trailing by six with 14 ticks left, the Bears turned the ball over on their next possession. The ball was stolen by Emilio Parks, who found Williams for the jam. The dunk came with six seconds left to put the Golden Bulls up 65-57 and would be the final points of the contest.
The Golden Bulls were led by Emilio Parks with 16 points. Williams added 14, Trevin Parks scored 13 and Marcus Walker contributed 12 in the win.
The Bears will return to action next week when they travel to Salisbury to battle Livingstone on Saturday, February 9. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.