The Campbell Camels defeated the Radford Highlanders 69-60 on Wednesday night.
With the victory, Campbell moved to the top of the Big South Conference’s North Division with a 5-1 record.
Trey Freeman led the Camels with 17 points followed by Darian Hooker with 15.
Campbell Head Coach Robbie Laing felt that Trey Freeman was critical to the teams offensive success.
“I just thought that Trey Freeman, for a little bit there, really carried us when we needed buckets. The rest of the guys kept their composure and I think that is good for such a young team,” said Coach Laing.
It was clear that Campbell was going to have a good night when Marvelle Harris won the jump ball and followed it up with the game’s first basket.
Soon after, Harris was at it again with a block that started a fastbreak with Andrew Ryan getting the ball down court to Reco McCarter for a thunderous slam dunk, which brought everyone in Gore Arena to their feet. McCarter’s slam put the Camels ahead 10-2 just four minutes into the game.
However, with 10:27 left to go in the first half, R.J. Price scored to pull the Highlanders even at 12-12.
The Camels responded with a run of their own scoring the next 9 points and finished out the half with a comfortable 35-20 lead. Trey Freeman, Marvelle Harris, and Darian Hooker led the Camels in scoring at the half with 6 points each.
In the beginning of the second half, Coach Laing thought the Camels were not playing their best.
The coach said, “We were not in sync offensively so I think taking care of the ball and executing offensively could have been better.”
Darius Leonard thought that Campbell needed to get their heads back in the game.
Leonard said, “We really got away from rebounding and were giving them second chance shots, so we had to get back to it.”
Despite giving up their halftime lead in the second half, the Camels regained their focus and finished the game strong to pull out a hard fought 9 point victory.
Overall, Campbell’s great composure and high energy helped get the win.
“I thought we played with great intensity the first half. We had a little low for 3 to 4 minutes in the beginning of the second half where our intensity dropped off. The game kind of came back in and we had to fight the whole way, but overall we played really well,” Laing said.
The Camels now have a 7-1 record over the last 8 games and evened their overall record to 10-10.
For the Camels, Coach Laing said the defense has improved tremendously over the course of the season.
“On the defensive end we have come a long, long way. We were not very good on the defensive end at all for the first part of the season, but we have been really special on that end in this winning streak,” he said.
Forward Antwon Oliver, a redshirt-junior, has high hopes for the upcoming conference games.
“A lot of intensity and a lot of defensive play is what we bring to the conference games,” Oliver said.
For the next game, the Camels go on the road to South Carolina for a Big South Conference game against Coastal Carolina on Saturday at 7:00 p.m.
By Sierra Fox