BUIES CREEK — Nych Smith scored a career-high 27 points and Adam Pickett added 23 to lead Winthrop to a 90-86 Big South Conference men’s basketball win over Campbell on Thursday night at Gore Arena.
In front of a national TV audience on ESPNU, Chris Clemons scored 34 points, while Andrew Eudy added a career-high 25 for the Camels (8-8, 1-1 Big South), who trailed by nine with 3:29 to play, but whittled the margin to two (85-83) on Clemons’ slam in traffic and converted three-point play with 42 seconds remaining.
Smith answered with a pullup three from the top of the key at the end of the shot clock, but Jordan Whitfield responded with a corner three with 9.2 to play to cut the margin to 88-86. Bjorn Broman knocked down both ends of a 1-and-1 with 5.6 seconds to play for the final margin as the Eagles won their sixth in the last seven games.
Campbell shot 65.5 percent in the opening half (19-29) and led 47-46 at intermission, but the Camels missed their first nine shots after the break. Smith scored 18 in the final period and his pull-up jumper provided the largest lead of the game (83-74) with 3:29 to go.
Smith made 12-of-18 shots, including 3-of-8 threes, while Pickett was 9-of-11 from the field for the Eagles, who shot 55.6 percent (35-63) and made 12-of-31 threes (.387). Austin Awad chipped in 12 points on 4-of-7 threes.
Clemons dealt a season-high six assists and produced his 22nd career 30-plus point outing. He extended his double-figure scoring streak to 98 games, the longest among active Division I players and fourth-longest all-time. He moved into 22nd place on the all-time NCAA Division I scoring list and now has 2,706 points in 113 games, just two behind Reggie Lewis of Northeastern (2,708 from 1983-87).
Eudy knocked down 9-of-16 shots, including 3-of-6 threes, plus all four of his free throws, while grabbing seven rebounds and finishing with seven assists, one shy of his career high. He surpassed his previous career high of 22 points, last accomplished Jan. 27, 2018 at Winthrop. Jordan Whitfield came off the bench to add 10 points in 29 minutes.
Campbell finished at 46.8 percent shooting (29-62), hit 9-of-28 threes (.321) and all 19 from the line. Winthrop finished with a 34-30 edge on the boards and the Eagle bench outscored the Camel reserves 34-10.
The nationally-televised match-up between two of the country’s most prolific 3-point shooting teams produced a season-high attendance of 2,704 at the 3,095-seat arena.
Campbell returns to action next Wednesday (Jan. 16) at UNC Asheville for a 7 p.m. tipoff.
(Campbell media services provided the basis for this report)