• The HPU men’s basketball team defeated the Big South preseason favorite UNC Asheville, 84-74, Wednesday night
• Junior Andre Fox scored a career-high 27 points, including a career-high six 3-pointers
• Sophomore Jahaad Proctor added 23 points, his most since the season-opening game against William & Mary (28 points)
HIGH POINT, N.C. — The High Point University men’s basketball opened up its home Big South slate in style, defeating conference preseason favorite UNC Asheville, 84-74, Wednesday night (Jan. 3) at the Millis Center.
The Panthers improved to 6-7 on the season and 1-1 in conference play, while the Bulldogs fell to 8-7 (1-1 in the Big South).
HPU controlled the glass with 41 rebounds to the Bulldogs’ 29, and held a 16-6 advantage on the offensive end. The Panthers recorded assists on 17 of 29 field goals, while UNC Asheville to nine assists on 25 made field goals.
“It was a great, great team win,” HPU head coach Scott Cherry said. “I thought we did a great job from beginning to end. They were playing comfortable with energy, with enjoyment and with confidence. We’re capable of doing this every time we step on the floor. I’m happy to see the energy and the way they believe in each other and now we have to just keep doing it.”
In the second half, the Bulldogs had a 7-0 run that cut the Panther lead to five at 48-43 at 14:20 remaining, but the Panthers countered with a 10-2 run over the next four minutes. HPU extended the lead to 16 at 68-52 with 7:37 to go on a layup by senior Jordan Whitehead. The closest UNC Asheville would get is 73-62 with 3:08 remaining before High Point pushed the lead back to 17 ahead of the final minute.
Junior Andre Fox hit a career-high six 3-pointers on the way to a career-high 24 points, while sophomore Jahaad Proctor added 21. It was the first time two Panthers recorded 20 or more points since the first game of this season against William & Mary (Nov. 10, 2017) when Proctor had 28 and Fox added 22.
It was Fox’s second-consecutive and seventh 20-plus point game this season. He only had six in all of 2016-17.
Junior Ricky Madison added 11 points, including 7-8 from the free throw line, and seven rebounds, while freshman Justyn Mutts also added seven rebounds.
In the first half, the Bulldogs had a slim 9-8 lead with 16:33 left before the Panthers went on a 19-7 run over the next seven minutes to take a 27-16 lead. The Bulldogs closed the half on a 12-4 run to cut the Panther halftime lead to 36-33.
The win for the Panthers stopped a three-game slide against the Bulldogs.
MaCio Teague led UNC Asheville with 21 points, while Raekwon Miller added 18.
Next up, the Panthers host Charleston Southern on Saturday (Jan. 6). Tip-off at the Millis Center is set for 7 p.m.