DAVIDSON, N.C. - Senior point guard Andrew Lawrence (London, England) scored a game-high 18 including his 1,000th career point, but it wasn't enough as College of Charleston fell on the road at Davidson, 77-68, on Saturday night before a sell-out crowd of 4,844 at Belk Arena.
Lawrence was one of three Cougars (12-7, 4-3 SoCon) in double figures along with 13 apiece from sophomore big man Adjehi Baru (Abidjan, Ivory Coast) and junior Anthony Thomas (Winston-Salem, N.C.). It was the second-straight Southern Conference loss for CofC against its two main South Division rivals.
The Wildcats (11-7, 6-1 SoCon) shot 48.1 percent from the field (26-of-54) and 87.5 percent from the free throw line (21-of-24) to take a two-game lead in the divisional league race.
The first half went back-and-forth with six lead changes as CofC jumped out to an early 6-2 run capped by Lawrence's milestone three-pointer at the 19:04 minute mark. He became the 30th player in school history to join the elite 1,000 career-point club.
The Cougars and Wildcats were both marred by a turnover prone first half with seven each. CofC's largest lead of the game was five points on a free throw made by redshirt junior Willis Hall (Charlotte, N.C.), 7-2, at 18:39.
Davidson was led in scoring by De'Mon Brooks who had 17 and JP Kuhlman and Nik Cochran who both had 15 each. The Wildcats' bench helped build their lead to 10 points at halftime, 44-34, thanks to 10 big first-half points by reserve Tom Droney who ended the night with 12.
The closest CofC got in the second half was on a three-pointer by redshirt senior Matt Sundberg (Kennesaw, Ga.) which cut the lead down to five, 64-59, with 6:12 remaining in regulation.
CofC will return home to prepare for its second meeting of the season with crosstown rival The Citadel (4-13, 1-6 SoCon) on Thursday, Jan. 24 at 7:00 p.m. (ET) at TD Arena.
For the 15th time this season, CofC went with the starting five of sophomore Anthony Stitt, senior Andrew Lawrence, junior Anthony Thomas, redshirt junior Willis Hall and sophomore forward Adjehi Baru (11-4).
With the win, Davidson improves to 51-14 in the all-time series with College of Charleston. It marked the Wildcats' fourth-straight win at home in the rivalry series since CofC's 2009 upset at Belk Arena.
Andrew Lawrence became the 30th player in program history to reach the 1,000 career-point plateau on his first basket of the game - a three-pointer at the 19:04 minute mark of the first half. He turned in a game-high 18 points which marked his 12th double-figure game of the season. Lawrence is currently on a three-game double-digit scoring streak and has tabulated 1,015 career points to date.
Anthony Thomas tied his career-high in points (13) and reset his career-best in field goals made (7) against Davidson. It was his fourth consecutive game in double figures which is currently the best scoring streak on the team.
Redshirt senior reserve Matt Sundberg contributed eight points off the bench including two key three-pointers in each half to get the Cougars within striking distance of the Wildcats.
For only the fourth time this season, CofC was outrebounded by its opponent, 37-28 (-9).
College of Charleston Head Coach Doug Wojcik
On the loss
"I was really proud of our guys. I thought we did a good job of taking care of the basketball, but we got into foul trouble in both halves. I thought our effort was fantastic. Regarding their run, they (Davidson) beat us in transition and we have been a really great transition defensive team all year. Give them credit. I really can accept it (the loss) in the sense that it is our third game on the road in six days. They hurt us on second shots tonight. They got second shots and we did not. They have a really good team with seven upperclassmen who have played together for four years. I thought we defended the three-point line really well. They normally get 20-25 threes a game. I can live with the effort. We will move on from this. It's the toughest stretch of the season, and now, we will get a couple of days off to get ready for The Citadel on Thursday."
College of Charleston Senior Point Guard Andrew Lawrence
On the loss ...
"We had some defensive breakdowns tonight. They (Davidson) are a really good team. They had guys coming off the bench 1 through 8 who scored and contributed. They have two really good guards and post players. They outrebounded us tonight which was key down the stretch. (De'Mon) Brooks is a big-time player. We don't make any excuses. They beat us today and were the better team. We will be ready for them the next time around (on Feb. 14)."