WINSTON-SALEM, NC – The Winston-Salem State Rams (7-6, 2-3 CIAA) rolled to a big 90-84 win over the Chowan Hawks (10-3, 3-2 CIAA), Saturday afternoon. The Rams controlled the game from the opening tip, but they had to fend off a tough Chowan team in order to claim the win.
The Rams took the win behind a solid offensive effort and some clutch defense. As a team, the Rams shot a solid 44.9% (31-of-69) from the floor. The Rams also held the Hawks to just 58 field goal attempts. WSSU senior forward William Crandell led the way for the Rams with 22 points and eight rebounds. Junior guard Robert Colon added 16 points while senior forward Jamel McAllister added 12 points with a game-high nine rebounds.
The Rams got things started with a strong defensive effort as they held the Hawks to just one field goal in the first three minutes of play. A Crandell tip-in with 16:40 left in the first half to give the Rams an 8-2 lead. Once in control, the Rams never looked back. However, the team had to work to claim the win as the team allowed Chowan to cut the WSSU down to three points, 16-13 before the Rams broke things open with a 13-5 run that was capped by lay-up from McAllister with 10:00 left in the first half. From there, the Rams had to fend off the Hawks who could never get any closer than seven points, 41-33 with 2:58 left in the quarter. From there, the Rams took their 46-38 lead into the locker room at halftime.
The second half was a different story as the Hawks outscored the Rams 46-44, but the Rams would not let their win slip away. The early second half belonged to the Hawks as the Rams allowed Chowan to pull to one point, 48-47 with 16:40 left to play. The Rams answered with jumper from senior forward Jalyn McKoy with 16:08 left to play. The jumper left the Rams ahead 50-47, but Chowan soon scored once again to stay within a point of the Rams. McKoy went on to hit back-to-back three-pointers to give the Rams a 56-49 cushion, 56-49 with 14:27 left to play. The cushion was all that the Rams would need as they held the Hawks at bay 6:50 mark when a Chowan three-pointer capped a Hawks run that tied the game, 73-73. McAllister answered with a lay-up to keep the Rams ahead, 75-73 with 5:15 left to play. From there, the Rams went on an 8-2 run that was capped by a Colon free throw with 2:37 left to play that gave the Rams an 83-77 lead. Chowan would hit a pair of free throws to pull to within four points of the Rams, 83-79, but WSSU went on to play some tough defense and hit some clutch baskets to seal the won. A Crandell lay-up with just 00:39 left to play was one of the biggest plays of the game as it gave the Rams an 85-79 lead and put the game away for the Rams. WSSU held the Hawks without a field goal for the remainder of the game and hit some key free throws to seal the 90-84 win.
With the win, the Rams improve to 7-6 overall and 2-3 in Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) play. The Rams will host the Elizabeth City State Vikings in a 7:30 p.m. game, Monday. For more information on Rams men's basketball, contact the WSSU Office of Athletic Media Relations at (336) 750-2143 or log on to www.WSSURams.com.