Cougars Get Back To Winning Ways With 71-58 Victory Over Delaware

Cougars Get Back To Winning Ways With 71-58 Victory Over Delaware
(Source: College of Charleston Athletics)

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) – Grant Riller had 21 points, Jarrell Brantley added 18 points and 12 rebounds and College of Charleston cruised to a 71-58 victory over Delaware on Saturday night at TD Arena.

VIDEO: CofC breaks losing streak with win over Delaware

It was Riller’s 12th game of the season with 20-or-more points for the Cougars (14-4, 3-2 CAA). He moved into 12th all-time in career scoring for CofC by surpassing Steven Johnson (1984-88).

Riller drove to the basket for an emphatic two-handed dunk that stretched Charleston’s lead to 66-48 with 2:39 left.

Ryan Allen had a game-high 23 points for the Blue Hens (12-7, 4-2), who had their four-game win streak snapped. Eric Carter added 11 points and seven rebounds. Kevin Anderson had 11 points.

Up next, the Cougars travel North to take on preseason CAA favorite Northeastern (9-8, 3-2 CAA) on Thursday, Jan. 17 at 7 p.m. (ET) in Boston, Mass., and Hofstra on Saturday, Jan. 19 at 4 p.m. (ET) in Hempstead, N.Y.

POSTGAME NOTES

• For the fourth-straight conference game, College of Charleston started Marquise Pointer, Grant Riller, Brevin Galloway, Jarrell Brantley and Nick Harris (2-2).

• With the win, College of Charleston extended its win streak to six games in the all-time series with Delaware. The Cougars now take a 9-5 lead in the series and have won the last four-straight meetings between to the two schools at TD Arena.

• Grant Riller recorded his 12th game this season with 20-or-more points with a team-high 21 points on 7-of-10 shooting versus Delaware. He moved into 12th all-time on CofC’s career scoring list surpassing former great Steven Johnson (1984-88). Riller has now tabulated 1,467 career points to date.

• Jarrell Brantley turned in his fifth double-double of the season and 28th of his career with 18 points and a game-high 12 rebounds against Delaware. He moved past former great Willis Hall (2009-14) on CofC’s career rebound list. He has now tabulated 1,621 career points and 834 career rebounds to date.

• The Cougars have now shot better than 50 percent from the field in back-to-back games: Drexel (55.4%) and Delaware (51.0%).

• The CofC defense held Delaware to 58 points – the fifth opponent this season to be held in the 50s. It was the Blue Hens’ second-lowest scoring output of the season. They also forced UD to commit 14 turnovers to which they converted into 18 points.

• A season-high crowd of 4,320 fans attended the Delaware game at TD Arena. The Cougars are now 115-44 (.723) all-time in their home venue since it opened in 2008.

POSTGAME QUOTES

College of Charleston Head Coach Earl Grant

On the game …

“The guys showed a lot of character by obviously bouncing back. We’ve faced a little adversity over the last five-to-seven days. This team hasn’t faced much of it, because we had won so many games and things were going great. We finally lost a couple of games, one where we beat ourselves. Being able to bounce back after watching the last game and seeing our mistakes, I thought it was a testament to the character of our guys and our locker room. It’s a good sign, because you never know how you will respond. I’m just really happy that we were able to play Charleston Basketball and guard the way we guard. Try to take care of the ball how we took care of the ball. It was good to see us be true to our identity today.”

On team’s playing zone against the Cougars …

“We like zone. We’ve always had success against the zone. If they (the other team) are zoning us, it’s probably a good sign most of the time for us. I thought the guys did a good job of executing.”

On the team playing a defensively sound game …

“No. 1 we just want to play hard. Try to force some turnovers and get after people. Be aggressive. I thought we did a really good job of that. We just have to build on it and find a way to get better. We made a step in the right direction today, now let’s get better.”

On Jarrell Brantley and Grant Riller responding from the back-to-back losses …

“They are two older guys who have been in the program for a while. I think they understood that we didn’t play good basketball the last five-or-seven days. We can be better. We can executive better, we can take a better shot and we can defend better. I think they had good focus the last 24 hours and it showed today.”

College of Charleston Junior Guard Grant Riller

On the game and playing better defensively …

“I think we come out flat sometimes. You have to come out aggressive. Tonight, I felt like we jumped on them (Delaware) early and it helped us throughout the game.”

College of Charleston Senior Forward Jarrell Brantley

On the game …

“This is probably the first time we have played a complete game in a long time defensively. Hopefully, we can keep continuing to do that.”