Five Cougars Hit For Double Figures, Riller Leads All Scorers With 22 Pts.
By: Jeff Walker, Sports Writer
Five players scored in double figures as the College of Charleston men’s basketball earned their third win on the season, picking up their first road win, downing Marshall 77-66 in Huntington, W.VA on Tuesday night. Senior guard Grant Riller went 9 of 12 from the field, finishing with a game best 22 points. As a team Charleston shot a season best 48.4% from the floor.
CofC head coach Earl Grant said he’s been following Marshall for some time, and knew what to expect. “I’m proud of my players coming into a hostile environment. We knew it would be a tough game. I’ve followed Marshall the last 20 years, so I know about this program and its tradition.”
Grant added, “I knew they had a good team and had good players. They play a very unique style. I give my players credit for following the game plan and showing great toughness. They found a way to win against a really good team.”
Unlike their first three games of the season, Charleston picked up 34 points in the paint with Sam Miller coming in off the bench for a season high 13 points for the Cougars. Brevin Galloway and Jaylen McManus chipped in 12 apiece, with McManus hauling in a game best nine rebounds. Zep Jasper continues to shine for the Cougars finishing with 10 points.
Coach Grant admitted his players were out-sized but that the Cougars had a secret weapon. “They have a lot of length. I thought they were longer than us. Obviously, taller than us. I thought we were quicker. You have to use what you got. We had speed and quickness. We used it and we came up with some steals and deflections.”
Down by seven early on in the contest, Riller reeled off nine straight points to put the Cougars up 22-19 midway through the first half. Both teams would remain strong on offense with the game knotted at 35 all at the break.
Marshall kept within a few possessions for most of the second half with both teams consistent from the floor. With less than three remaining the Cougars went up by 11 points (71-60) on a jumper by Miller. Jasper would add four from the free throw line as Charleston left town with a ten point margin of victory. The Cougars improve to 3-1 on the season.
Despite some early miscues in the first 20 minutes of play Coach Grant didn’t expect an easy go of it. “Again, we knew it would be hard. We were concerned about the game with their style of play and how they move the ball. Coach (D’Antoni) does a great job of getting his guys playing with speed and pace. You have to be very focused when guarding them. I thought our players did a good job of that tonight.”
The Cougars will continue their road travel to UCF (2-1) next on Saturday, Nov. 23 at 2 p.m. (ET) in Orlando, Fla. The game will be televised nationally on ESPN3