Dover, Del. (Feb. 4, 2019) --- Jonathan Mitchell and Myles Carter posted career scoring highs to lead shorthanded Delaware State to its first 2018-19 MEAC men’s basketball win, defeating South Carolina State 70-68 in Memorial Hall this evening.
In addition to earning its first conference win of the season (1-8), the Hornets snapped an overall 10-game losing streak to improve to 4-18 overall this season. The victory was DSU’s first since winning at Delaware 73-71 on Dec. 19.
Delaware State dressed just eight players for the game.
Mitchell led the Hornets with a career-high 24 points vs. South Carolina State, connecting on nine-of-17 shots from the field, including two three-pointers (2-8), and was perfect on four free throw attempts. He also grabbed a game-high nine rebounds, including six on the offensive board.
Mitchell’s previous DSU high was 18 points at Washington State on Nov. 24.
Carter came off the bench to tally a personal-best 16 points on six-for-nine shooting from the field and three-of-four at the free throw line. He entered the contest with 29 points for the season, including a high of five points vs. Penn on Nov. 27.
Pinky Wiley and Ameer Bennett contributed 12 points each to give the Hornets four double-figure scorers in Monday’s game.
South Carolina State’s Damani Applewhite led all players with 29 points on eight-for-13 shooting from the field and 13-of-14 at the free throw line.
Mitchell scored the game-winning points on a tip-in basket and free throw with 12 seconds left to play
The Hornets trailed 34-28 at the half and were down 68-67 before Mitchell’s heroics.
“We played eight buys tonight, so everyone had to step up,” said Mitchell, one of three seniors on the 2018-19 Hornets. “Everyone worked extremely hard in the game and I just happened to be in the right position to make the winning play.”
South Carolina State had one possession after Mitchell’s go-ahead basket, but a jumper by Jamal Raynor-Powell was off the mark in the final seconds.
Delaware State led 10-4 in the early going, but trailed by six at the break. The Bulldogs held the biggest lead of the game, nine points, on three occasions in the second half.
The Hornets led for the first time in the second half, 63-61, on a lay-up by Carter with 3:12 remaining in the game.
After SC State regained the lead at 66-64, Wiley pulled the Hornets back even with a jumper at the 2:04 mark of the second half.
“I couldn’t be more proud of our guys,” said Delaware State first-year head coach Eric Skeeters. “We’ve had some tough losses of late, but instead of hanging their heads, the guys have worked hard to improve each game. It’s great that their hard work has paid off with a win, but we must now focus on the next game and a chance to win two in a row.”
The Hornets shot 48.1% for the game, connecting on 25 of their 52 shots from the field, including six of 19 from three-point range (31.6%). South Carolina State was 21-for-56 overall from the field (37.5%) and five of 24 from beyond the arc (20.8%).
Delaware State played without leading scorer Kevin Larkin (disciplinary) and No. 3 scorer Saleik Edwards (injury).
The Hornets are on the road for their next two games, beginning with a visit to North Carolina A&T on Saturday (Feb. 9). DSU will wrap up the trip with a Feb. 11 contest at North Carolina Central.
Delaware State’s next home game is Feb. 23 against Maryland-Eastern Shore.