Seahawks, Rendleman Charm Cobras, 62-47
Courtesy: UNCW Athletic Communications
WILMINGTON, North Carolina - Senior forward Keith Rendleman notched his 25th career double-double with 20 points and 13 rebounds to power UNCW over NCAA Division II Coker, 62-47, Wednesday night at Trask Coliseum.
The Seahawks won their fourth home game in as many tries and evened their record at 4-4 on the season. The Cobras of Conference Carolinas now stand 2-4 on the season after losing to UNCW in the first regular season meeting between the two teams.
Rendleman, a four-year standout from Iron Station, N.C., had 11 points at halftime and added nine more in the second stanza for his game-high total. It was third double-double of the season after similar efforts against Richmond and Hampton. He also added a career-high six steals.
Senior guard Andrew Morris was the only player in double figures for the Cobras with 12 points.
UNCW crept out to a 27-22 lead at halftime and survived an early rally by the stubborn Cobras in the second half before pulling away. The Seahawks forced 22 turnovers and held the visitors from Hartsville, S.C., to 26.3 percent (5-of-19) shooting from 3-point range.
Julian Nelson scored the first bucket of the second half to help Coker get within striking distance, 27-24, but Freddie Jackson hit back-to-back buckets and an 11-3 run gave the Seahawks some much-needed separation.
Milson dropped in a floater in the lane at 14:37 and Chris Dixon made the second of two free throw attempts to push the advantage to 45-32 with 10 minutes on the clock.
Jackson drained a trey from the left corner and Milson followed with a baseline jumper to give UNCW a 60-43 cushion with 3:29 left in the contest. The lead ballooned to as many as 19 points with 2:13 remaining.
UNCW jumped out of the gate early and used an 8-3 spurt over a 2:59 span to move ahead, 10-3. A three-ball by Milson gave the Seahawks an early seven-point margin with just over 16 minutes left in the first half.
After the Cobras closed the gap to 12-10, the Seahawks reeled off 11 consecutive points over the next 5:06 to take control. A jumper by Cedrick Williams on the right elbow began the spurt and a reverse layup by reserve forward Dylan Sherwood with 6:22 left in the opening period extended the margin to 23-10.
Coker battled back, however, to get within five points at intermission. The Cobras trailed, 27-17, with 1:27 left, but scored the final seven points of the period. A long three-pointer by Morris with one second remaining helped Coker cut the deficit to 27-22 at the break.
The Seahawks head back on the road for their next two outings, beginning Saturday with a 7 p.m. date on ESPN3 against ACC member Georgia Tech in Atlanta.
GAME NOTES: Buzz Peterson is 14-17 against non-conference opponents in his three seasons at UNCW ... UNCW's last NCAA Division II opponent was Alaska-Fairbanks during the 1996 season ... UNCW is now 45-35 against South Carolina schools in its history ... Peterson used the same starting lineup for the third straight contest ... UNCW outrebounded its opponent for the third time this season ... The Seahawks nabbed a season-high 14 steals.