CSU tips off Big South tourney with win over Winthrop

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WCIV) - With an NIT bid already wrapped up, Barclay Radebaugh and his Buccaneers wanted much more -- payback against a Winthrop team that beat them in overtime last month.

And a Big South tournament title -- and the automatic NCAA bid that goes with it -- would be the perfect finish.

The Bucs tipped off at noon against the Eagles and pushed them hard the whole game.

Mathiang Muo scored 15 points, all on 3-pointers, and grabbed 11 rebounds to lead Charleston Southern to a 54-47 victory Thursday in a Big South Conference quarterfinal.

Muo hit three 3-pointers in the first half as the Buccaneers (18-11) built a 31-22 halftime lead.

The Eagles (14-17), who split two games with Charleston Southern in the regular season, rallied to trail 41-40 in the second half, but two free throws by Malcolm Bernard and Arlon Harper's layup made it 45-40. Muo's final 3-pointer gave Charleston Southern a 52-46 advantage with 2:35 left.

Harper scored 11 points for the Buccaneers, the South Division's top seed. All-Big South guard Saah Nimley made just 1 of 13 shots and had seven points. Charleston Southern shot just 28% (14 of 50) but had a 45-28 rebounding edge.

Joab Jerome scored 15 points for Winthrop, which defeated Radford in the opening round.