Vanlandingham, Pirates Plunder Bearcats, 84-75
GREENWOOD, S.C. - The Armstrong Atlantic State University men's basketball team used a 15-2 first-half run to jump out to an early lead and come away with an 84-75 Peach Belt Conference victory over host Lander on Wednesday evening in Greenwood, S.C.
With the win, the Pirates (10-10, 6-6 PBC) halted a three-game road skid and moved back to .500 overall and in the conference, while Lander (12-7, 5-6 PBC) dropped its third straight contest to drop to sixth in the PBC East Division.
Armstrong led by five, 24-19, halfway through the first half when a Keyshore Williams three-pointer sparked the 15-2 run that left the Pirates up by 18, 39-21, with 5:32 left until halftime. Lander narrowed the gap by scoring the last 13 points of the half and cutting the deficit to five, 39-34, at the break.
The Bearcats would cut the lead to three points on three separate occasions in the second half, but each time the Pirates would answer. A Stephen Davis bucket with 4:44 left pushed the lead back to double digits, 75-65, and Armstrong was able to close out the win, the third for the Pirates in their last four contests.
Senior Chris Vanlandingham led a trio of Pirates in double figures with a season-high 27 points on 11-of-19 shooting from the field, including 2-of-3 three-pointers, moving past Tyrone Green (1,063) into 14th place on the Armstrong all-time scoring chart with 1,073 career points. Williams notched his third straight double-double with 18 points and 11 rebounds. Senior DeVon Jones added 10 points and seven boards while senior Mychal Horn dished out nine assists.
Lander placed four players in double figures, led by Dwight Tolbert's 21 points on 7-of-19 shooting from the floor, including 4-of-12 three-point shots. Corey Wright added 15 points, seven rebounds and six assists while Jermel Kennedy chipped in 13 points and Darion Canty pumped in 10.
Armstrong returns to action on Saturday, February 4, hosting No. 24-ranked USC Aiken in a 7:30 p.m. Peach Belt Conference contest at Alumni Arena.