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Dragons Dialed In Against Seahawks

Courtesy: UNCW Athletic Communications  
Release: 01/14/2012
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WILMINGTON, North Carolina - Streaking Drexel held UNCW to one field goal over the final nine minutes of the first half and then got hot from long range early in the second period to cruise past the Seahawks, 79-57, in a Colonial Athletic Association men's basketball game Saturday night at Trask Coliseum.

The Dragons won for the 10th time in 11 outings to improve to 12-5 overall and 4-2 in the CAA. UNCW dropped its second straight to dip to 7-9 and 3-3.

Derrick Thomas paced Drexel, which snapped a two-game losing streak to the Seahawks, with 19 points on 8-of-12 shooting from the floor, including 3-of-4 from behind the 3-point line. Samme Givens and Damion Lee added 15 and 14 points, respectively.

Junior forward Keith Rendleman led the Seahawks for the ninth time this season with a game-high 23 points and nine rebounds. Adam Smith chipped in 14 points off the bench and KK Simmons added 12.

After racing out to a 37-23 halftime lead, Drexel connected on five of its first seven field goal attempts to open the second half, with Thomas scoring eight straight points, to increase the margin to 48-27 at 15:51.

Drexel still led, 53-34, at 13:16 when UNCW head coach Buzz Peterson was ejected from the contest. Damion Lee converted all four free throws to extend the lead to 57-34. Drexel later enjoyed its largest lead, 9-35, on a layup by Kazembe Abif with 1:13 showing.

The Seahawks managed to slice the deficit to 61-47 on a pair of back-to-back triples by Simmons. A bomb from Simmons in front of the Seahawk bench brought the Seahawks within 14 points with 9:24 remaining.

But the Dragons responded with six consecutive points, capped by a Daryl McCoy slam, to get the margin back to 67-47 and were never threatened down the stretch.

Drexel built a 37-23 halftime lead by cranking up the defense and taking advantage of UNCW's early turnover difficulties. After Rendleman staked the Seahawks to a 20-18 edge with a putback of his own shot at 5:35, the Dragons reeled off 10 unanswered to pull ahead, 28-20.

Chris Fouch drained a three-pointer on the wing to start the run, Frantz Massenat added a trey from the top of the key and Givens tossed in a pair of free throws and connected on a turnaround jumper in the paint at 2:51 to complete the spurt.

Drexel outscored UNCW, 19-3, over the final 5:13 of the first half behind 12 points from Samme Givens. The Dragons scored 11 points off nine UNCW turnovers and outrebounded the Seahawks, 19-13, in the opening period.

Rendleman got the Seahawks rolling early, scoring seven of the team's first 10 points, to give UNCW a 10-6 lead at 14:48. The Iron Station, N.C., product finished the first half with 11 points and seven rebounds for the Seahawks.

The Seahawks close out a two-game homestand on Wednesday when James Madison visits Trask Coliseum for a 7 p.m. tip-off. The Dragons complete a two-game road trip on Wednesday when Bruiser Flint's club travels to former America East rival Hofstra for a 7 p.m. start.

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