WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- Junior guard Trevor Deloach banged in a three-pointer from the left wing as time expired – his only basket of the game - to lift UNCW past Georgia State, 59-56, in a close Colonial Athletic Association men’s basketball contest Wednesday night at Trask Coliseum.
The surging Seahawks won their third straight game to improve to 8-6 overall and 2-1 in the CAA, moving two games over .500 for the first time this season. The Panthers suffered their first conference loss and stand 7-6 and 2-1.
Senior point guard Chad Tomko poured in 19 points and grabbed 10 rebounds for his second double double and the fourth of his career. Sophomore forward Keith Rendleman added a career-high 18 points and six boards for the winners.
Senior guard Dante Curry led all scorers in the contest with 27 points on 9-for-13 shooting, including a torrid 7-for-10 behind the arc. He was the only player in double figures for the Panthers, who shot just 37.5 percent on the night and made only 6-of-18 at the charity stripe.
UNCW built a 30-25 advantage at halftime as Tomko and Curry dueled early. The Seahawks held the Panthers to 34.5 percent shooting, but couldn’t pull away after committing seven turnovers in the opening period.
GSU finally caught the Seahawks midway through the half. UNCW was still clinging to a 35-28 lead before the Panthers rallied with eight straight points to grab the lead. Reserve forward Josh Micheaux grabbed a missed rebound and drove in for the basket to give the Panthers their first lead since 19:04 in the first half, 36-35.
UNCW answered with buckets by Tomko and Rendleman, but GSU responded behind Micheaux and Eric Buckner to knot the score at 40-all with 12:04 on the clock.
No more than three points separated the two teams in a tight battle the rest of the way. After Rendleman’s turnaround jumper knotted the score at 56-all, Micheaux’s field goal attempt missed with 22 seconds left and the Seahawks called timeout with 11 seconds remaining.
Tanner Milson took the inbounds pass, dropped the ball off to Tomko and the senior from Charlotte found Deloach on the opposite side of the Seahawk bench. Deloach didn’t hesitate and drained the game-winner, sending the Seahawk bench into a frenzy and delighting the 3,523 Seahawk faithful.
GSU bolted out to a 6-3 lead in the first half before the Seahawks reeled off 11 straight points while holding the Panthers scoreless over a seven-minute stretch. Milson drained a triple from the left corner to kick start the spurt and Matt Wilson’s layup with 13:52 left in the first half staked UNCW to a 13-6 lead at 13:52.
The lead swelled to eight points two more times as UNCW controlled the early part of the game. Tomko raced past two GSU defenders for a layup at 11:28 to put the Seahawks on top, 18-10, at 11:28.
After Marques Johnson connected on a free throw jumper, Rendleman nailed a baseline shot and reserve guard Darryl Felder canned a trifecta in front of the GSU bench to extend the margin to 25-14 at 7:37.
GSU rallied to slice the deficit to eight points on a transition dunk by Brandon McGee, but Tomko drained a long triple to get the lead back to 30-19 at 3:43. GSU scored the last six points of the first period on three balls by Curry and Rashaad Richardson to close the gap to 30-25 at the break.
The Seahawks play the second leg of a three-game homestand on Saturday when VCU visits for a 7 p.m. tip-off. The Panthers return to Atlanta to entertain Towson on Saturday at 6 p.m.
GAME NOTES: The Seahawks improved to 7-1 when leading at halftime this season…Peterson now stands 4-1 lifetime against GSU’s Rod Barnes…UNCW owns a 5-2 record at home against the Panthers and 8-5 overall…Peterson is now 11-13 in his career in one-point games…The Seahawks committed just four turnovers in the second half…GSU won the rebounding battle, 37-36…UNCW shot 42.6 percent from the floor…GSU had six blocks to three for UNCW…Senior guard Ahmad Grant was held scoreless after bringing an 8.0 ppg clip into the contest…Junior forward Eric Buckner was limited to eight points and 12 boards for GSU after scoring 28 in GSU’s upset of VCU on Monday…Tomko added four assists to his all-around game.
article courtesy UNCW Sports Information