CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. — It took a game longer than he would have liked, but Walters State men’s basketball coach Bill Carlyle notched his 800th career coaching victory with the Senators Wednesday night in one of the most unlikely of places.
Walters State overcame a late deficit to score 8 points in the final two minutes of the contest with TCCAA rival Chattanooga State, as the Senators grabbed an 89-86 victory over the Tigers to give Carlyle yet another milestone victory in Navy and Red.
With the win, the Senators improve to 14-5 on the year and 6-2 in TCCAA play. Carlyle has more than 1,200 victories in his 50-year coaching career.
The loss dropped the Tigers to 14-4 overall and 4-4 in region play.
WSCC had one of its best nights of the year handling the basketball, as they turned it over just seven times in the win. The Senators also outrebounded the Tigers 41-39 in the contest, including 20 offensive rebounds that led to 27 second chance points.
Walters State trailed 33-24 in the first half, the largest deficit of the game for either team, and the home team took a 45-38 lead into the halftime break. The Tigers still held a 72-66 margin as the clock ticked under eight minutes, and they led 82-81 with two minutes to go before the Senators took over to get the win.
Walters State shot 46.1 percent (35 of 76) from the field in the win, making just 2 of 9 from long range, but they had an exceptional night at the charity stripe by nailing 17 of 19 attempts.
Ricky Dunnaway led the Senators with 20 points in the win, while Kelvin Jackson notched 18 points, Chase Nappier tallied 13 points, Corey Nelson totaled 11 points and 9 rebounds and Johnny Fox netted 10 points in the victory.
Chattanooga State shot 49.3 percent (36 of 73) from the floor in the contest, making 6 of 28 from beyond the 3-point arc. Dav Moore led the Tigers with 21 points and 10 boards, while Larry Spicer tallied 19 points, Brandon Shingles added 16 points and Marquis Tipton had 11 points in the loss.
The Senators will return to the home hardwood Saturday afternoon when they host Cleveland State beginning at 2 p.m.
BY WALTERS STATE