ORANGEBURG, S.C. – Donte Wright scored a game-high 31 points while teammates Damani Applewhite and Ozante Fields added 14 and 12 points, respectively, to lead South Carolina State to a 93-65 victory over Brevard in Thursday evening men's basketball action.
Wright, who finished 11-of-31 from the floor and 7-of-13 from beyond the arc, powered the way for a S.C. State offense that finished 36-of-59 (61%) from the floor and 11-of-23 (47.8%) from beyond the arc. Applewhite, who was also active on the glass with a game-best seven rebounds, finished off the contest by hitting 7-of-8 from the field.
Fields, the Bulldogs' leading scorer off the bench, finished 6-of-8 from the field and grabbed four rebounds along the way. He was key in South Carolina State (2-8) finishing with 28 points off the bench.
Brevard's offense was led by senior Stevie Williams, who finished with 16 points after converting 6-of-13 field goals and 3-of-6 3-pointers. Williams capped off his solid outing with four assists, four rebounds and two steals.
Divese Carson also had a solid night offensively, scoring 10 points on 4-of-8 shooting to go along with four rebounds and three assists. Teammate Shelby Parris came through with 11 points, due in large part to a 3-of-10 outing from the floor and a 4-of-4 evening at the free throw line.
The trio helped Brevard (0-4) finish 22-of-54 (40.7%) from the field, 10-of-24 (41.7%) from the free throw line and 11-of-15 (73.3%) in their second game against an NCAA Division I opponent of the season.
With a 40-27 advantage coming out of the locker room, S.C. State's offense picked up where it left off at the close of the first half with a series of 3-pointers by Wright and Jon Kinard, moving in front 49-30. JaMarquis Johnson answered with a trey for the Tornados, but it the Bulldogs scored nine of the next 12 points to take a 20-point lead less than five minutes into the half.
Parris scored the next five points for the Tornados, trimming the lead to 58-40, but six points from Applewhite during a 12-5 run allowed S.C. State to stretch the advantage to 25.
Reserve Demari Hopper stepped up for the Tornados, knocking down a timely 3-pointer, but it was not enough to derail S.C. State's offense which followed with a pair of treys by Wright as the lead grew to 81-51.
The backcourt of Parris and Williams combined for seven points for the Tornados, while the reserve trio of Ke'Vel Kingsberry, Eric Evans and Jonas Bradshaw added seven points to make for the final 14 Brevard points.
Brevard's offense established itself early, using a series of 3-pointers by Williams and Levi Lamb to grab a 6-2 advantage less than two minutes into the contest. Applewhite answered with a series of buckets for S.C. State, knotting the game at six-all at the 16:16 mark.
The two teams would trade points for the next three minutes before a layup by Williams followed a Levi Lamb free throw, giving Brevard an 11-8 advantage. The Tornados' lead ballooned to five, 15-10, following a layup by Cannon Lamb with just under 11 minutes remaining.
South Carolina State quickly answered with a 10-5 run, highlighted by 3-pointers from Wright and Janai Rayner-Powell, knotting the game at 20-all with 7:12 remaining. Applewhite provided the Bulldogs with their first lead since 8-7, converting a free throw.
The Bulldogs used the momentum established during their 10-point run over the next five minutes, outscoring Brevard 19-5 behind nine points and two 3-pointers by Wright. Williams answered for Brevard with the final points of the half as S.C. State took a 40-27 lead into the break.
The Tornados return to action on Saturday afternoon when they head to Berea for a 2 p.m. contest with the Mountaineers.