Furman University's Student Newspaper

The Paladin

Furman University's Student Newspaper

The Paladin

Furman University's Student Newspaper

The Paladin

Furman Outlasts ETSU for Huge Road Win, 65-63

JP Pegues was clutch down the stretch as a late run helped propel Furman to their fourth straight win over ETSU.
Courtesy of Furman Athletics
Junior guard JP Pegues led Furman with 15 points in win vs ETSU on Saturday, Feb. 10.

The Furman Paladins traveled to Johnson City, Tenn. on Saturday, Feb. 10 with more than basketball on their minds. Just one day after the passing of Paladin football star Bryce Stanfield, hearts were still hurting. The hosting East Tennessee State Buccaneers, acknowledging this, honored the legacy of Stanfield with a moment of silence and reflection prior to the tip off.

The first half was a defensive battle as neither team could find any offensive rhythm. The game began with an ETSU turnover, followed by senior forward Garrett Hien’s buckets. Hien scored the game’s first four points and six overall in the half.

The Paladin defense had one of their best halves statistically this season, holding ETSU to only nine made field goals and forcing seven Buccaneer turnovers. Unfortunately for the Dins, ETSU forward Jadyn Parker scored nine first half points while also grabbing three offensive rebounds. ETSU’s 10 offensive rebounds led to 10 second chance points, preventing the Dins from ever building a sizable lead.

Furman led by as many as seven early, while ETSU led by as many as four at the midway point of the half. The first half consisted of three ties and two lead changes. Entering the break, the Paladins led by one point, 30-29.

The early second half was dominated by the Buccaneers with guard Quimari Peterson behind the wheel, scoring a team-high 14 points. In addition to Peterson, ETSU had four other double-digit scorers keeping the Paladins at bay and ballooning their lead up to 11. It seemed that every Furman bucket was immediately answered by the Bucs and the lead never shrunk.

With their backs against the wall at the under six-minute mark, Furman needed a spark. Senior guard Marcus Foster provided this with two buckets to cut into the Buccaneer lead. ETSU guard Ebby Asamoah ended the Paladin run with a jumper to put the Bucs back up by five with over three minutes to go.

The next minute saw a 3-pointer from junior guard JP Pegues and an alley-oop dunk from freshman forward Cooper Bowser to tie the game at 61 with two minutes to go. Pegues put the game in his own hands and drew three fouls down the stretch. He converted on four free throws to seal the victory.

Down by two, ETSU had one last chance with one second remaining, but the full court heave was knocked away and Furman came out victorious. Pegues finished with 15 points to lead the Paladins, and Foster poured in 11. Junior forward Tyrese Hughey and sophomore forward Ben VanderWal each added eight.

With this win, Furman has almost certainly solidified themselves in the top six of the league standings and will earn a first round bye at the Southern Conference tournament in Asheville, NC. next month. The win propelled the Dins back over .500 at 13-12 (7-5 SoCon), while the loss dropped ETSU to 13-12 (5-7 SoCon).

The Paladins are back in action on Wednesday, Feb. 14 at Timmons Arena against the Virginia Military Institute, who comes in at 4-21 (1-11 SoCon).

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About the Contributor
Brock Eastman
Brock Eastman, Sports Editor
Brock Eastman is a junior from Summerville, SC. He is studying Biomedical Science and Religion on the pre-dental track. This is his first year with the paper and he’s excited to cover all of Furman’s teams and athletes. A fun fact about him is that he finished first in his age group in the Greenville Marathon two years ago.
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