Pearson leads SE Missouri to victory over Longwood
HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. (AP)—Roderick Pearson scored 22 points to lead the Southeast Missouri State Redhawks to a 82-78 victory over the Longwood Lancers in the fourth round of the Chicago Invitational Challenge at the Sears Centre.
SE Missouri (3-3) struggled offensively in the first half, only shooting 31.8 percent from the field, but they came back to shoot 70 percent in the second half.
Brandon Foust finished the game with 19 points. Jaycen Herring added 15, all of which came in the second half.
Longwood (2-5) led 39-29 at the half, despite struggling to break SE Missouri’s press and turning the ball over 15 times. Longwood’s Brandon Giles was the Lancers’ leading scorer with 15 points. Four other members of the Lancers squad—Kirk Williams, Lamar Barrett, Dana Smith and Ryan Bogan— finished the game with 10 points or more.
The Redhawks started to come alive early in the second half, cutting the Lancers’ lead to 3 on a David Johnson 3-pointer with 16 minutes to play. Shortly after, SE Missouri caught on fire, taking a 50-43 lead after converting on four consecutive fast breaks, capped by a David Johnson steal and dunk.
The Redhawks had a double-digit lead with 8 minutes left to play, but Lancers guard Brandon Giles brought his team within 5 after sinking a 3-pointer and hitting 2 free throws on Longwood’s next possession.
With less than a minute to play, Longwood’s Kirk Williams, who had 14 points on the day, brought his team within one point with a towering alley-oop dunk. However, Redhawks guard Roderick Pearson, who was electric in the second half, went down the court and connected from 3-point range to make the score 80-76. The 4-point lead would prove to be insurmountable, as the Redhawks went on to win by that margin.