Jeff Griffith (@Jeff_Griffith21)
The Drexel Dragons dropped their fourth straight contest in blowout fashion, as the defending CAA champions UNC Wilmington Seahawks caught fire from the field en route to a dominant 90-72 win Thursday night at the Daskalakis Athletic Center.
UNCW took control early and didn’t let go – the Seahawks led 8-0 in the first two minutes and quickly blew that lead up to 18-4 on an easy transition layup by Devontae Cacok. The biggest first-half lead for UNCW, 47-22 came on Denzel Ingram triple with 1:15 left in the first half, as they continued to dominate Drexel from the get-go.
By the time the half rolled around, the Seahawks’ advantage had ballooned to 49-26 after a late 12-2 run. UNCW had three different double-digit first-half performances, with 14 points in particular from Ingram.
It was the way the Seahawks closed out the opening half that squashed the Dragons, as UNCW re-gained all forms of control after giving up a Drexel triple from Sammy Mojica that cut the lead to 16 late in the first. Drexel found some key baskets early in the second half, including an John Moran three that kept the Dragons within 20, but there was simply no coming back for the home team, which found itself trailing by as many as 25 midway through the latter frame.
Even so, the Dragons fought their way to within 9 on a couple more Moran triples in the final five minutes of play. Although they weren’t able to get any closer, the Dragons showed a wealth of heart in the way they performed down the stretch in the losing effort.
After finishing the first half with just four points, senior Rodney Williams put on a nice second-half performance to finish with a team-high 17 points and 11 rebounds. John Moran also had himself a solid night, contributing 12 points on 4-of-9 three-point shooting.
The Seahawks finished with four different double-digit scorers, and were led as a whole by the efforts of Ingram and Cacok, as well as Chris Flemmings. Each of those three broke 20 points, with Ingram and Cacok each holding the team-high of 22. Cacok also had a double-double, adding 14 rebounds.
52: UNCW was lights out from the field; after a 61 percent clip in the first half, the Seahawks finished with an overall mark of 52 percent from the field, while hitting on 9-of-22 three-point attempts.
13: One of the few highlights for Drexel, the Dragons were able to handle UNCW’s frenetic full-court press to a decent level, only turning the ball over 13 times despite the Seahawks revving up the pace on defense.
Drexel (6-10, 0-3 CAA) at William & Mary – Sat., Jan. 7 @ 7:00 p.m.
UNCW (14-2, 3-0 CAA) at Delaware – Sat., Jan. 7 @ 7:00 p.m.