DePaul 58, Charlotte 50
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP)—Curtis Withers scored 12 points and Curtis Nash battled through a knee injury to help Charlotte overcome a slow start Saturday and defeat DePaul 58-50.
Nash hit a 3-pointer to give Charlotte (13-13, 8-6 Conference USA) the lead for good at 50-47 with just over two minutes remaining.
Withers and Eddie Basden, who tied a school record with seven steals, both hit a pair of field goals in the final 30 seconds, and Basden dunked the ball to help the 49ers win for the fifth time in six games.
The win kept alive Charlotte’s chance of getting a first-round bye in the Conference USA tournament.
Sam Hoskin led DePaul (14-11, 6-8) with 11 points and 11 rebounds.
Charlotte missed its first 15 shots, digging itself into a 12-0 hole.
The 49ers didn’t score until the 10:55 mark of the first half when Calvin Clemmons put back an offensive rebound and was fouled on the play.
His team quickly cut into the lead with an 11-0 run, helped by some sloppy ball-handling by the Blue Demons, who committed 12 first-half turnovers.
The teams traded the lead in the second half until Nash’s 3.
After playing just five minutes in the first half, Nash returned with a knee brace after the break and scored eight points.
“This was senior day and I was going to do whatever it took to gut it out,” he said.
Charlotte’s Demon Brown, who entered the game leading the nation in 3-pointers, didn’t score from the field until nailing down a 3 with 3:45 left to give the 49ers a 47-42 lead. Brown finished with just four points, 14 below his average.
“We wanted to crowd him and make his life uncomfortable,” DePaul coach Dave Leitao said. “You have to prepare for him like an NBA player. He knows how to come off screens quick. We had to keep a guy out there nagging him the whole game.”