ORANGEBURG, SC—The South Carolina State Bulldogs used a balance attack in their home-opener Tuesday (Nov.6th) to cruise to an, 99-51, victory over visiting Brevard College at Smith-Hammond-Middleton Memorial Center.
The Bulldogs were powered by Preseason All-MEAC selection junior forward Damani Applewhite with 19 points and six rebounds, while junior forward Ozante Fields recorded the games only double-double with 15 points and 11 rebounds.
Senior point guard Jani Rayner-Powell added 17 and junior forward Ian Kinard finished with 11 points to give South Carolina State the victory.
"It was a good win for us tonight," said head coach Murray Garvin. "It's been a long time since we had a home-opener since I been the here and the crowd was awesome. I want to thank all the fans, students and the Bulldog community for coming out to support us."
The Bulldog defense was rent less forcing a game-high 26 turnovers and snatching 11 steals limiting the Tornados to just 18 points in the first-half.
South Carolina State jumped out quick with a 17-2 lead off a layup and made free-throw by Fields at the 11:09 mark in the first-half. Sophomore guard Rayshawn Neal tossed in four-straight points to give the Bulldogs a commanding 31-7 advantage with 6:33 remaining in the half.
Back-to-back 3-pointers Raynor-Powell and junior guard Jahmari Etienne pushed SCSU ahead 44-16. Applewhite closed the half with a monster dunk to give the Bulldogs a 47-18 lead during intermission.
The second-half was clearly no different from the first as Raynor-Powell's 3-pointer at the 7:43 mark gave SC State 48-point lead, 84-36. A driving layup by freshman guard Allen Hatchett, Jr., followed by a pair of free-throws put the game out of reach 97-42 with less than 2:34 remaining in regulation.
The Bulldogs dominated in nearly every category leading the way in rebounds (37-16), points in the paint (44-22), points off turnovers (39-5) , second chance points (20-2) and 51-8 off bench points.
South Carolina State shot 60% from 3-point land hitting 9-of-15 from behind the arc and 71.0% from the charity stripe 22-of-31.
Brevard was led by Cannon Lamb with 10 points, while Qadhafi added eight (8) in the loss.
"We will enjoy this win for the next 24 hours and get ready for a tough road schedule beginning with the University of Tulsa on Saturday," said Garvin.