from the Newberry Wolves athletics web site:
NEWBERRY WINS AT CATAWBA 108-101
Freshman James Stepp (Greensboro NC/Ragsdale HS), had 18 points on six made 3-point shots (6-9) and three of them were during the most critical time of the game, proving not only can James really shoot the basketball, but he can make game winning shots. Reggie Perkins (Greensboro, N.C./Western Guilford HS), with 12 points, reached double-digits for the Catawba Indians.
“It was one of the greatest college basketball games I have ever been a part of,” said Newbery Basketball coach Dave Davis. The Tuesday night game at Catawba College pitted longtime friends Rob Perron the new head coach at Catawba, and Davis in his 5th season at Newberry. Perron had been an assistant coach at Newberry the past two years and he and Davis had coached together for in two different stints at Pfeiffer. “Rob and I are extremely close and this is the case with our players as well, so it was an emotional game.” Many former players from the Pfeiffer days were in attendance and no one was disappointed in the quality of game they got to witness on this night.
Neither team deserved to lose this incredible battle. Newberry led by as many as 14 points in the first half and Catawba stormed back and took a seven point lead with six minutes to go in the game. Newberry was not to be denied, despite adversity and unbelievable play by the Catawba Team. Newberry made six of its final seven 3-point attempts, went 16-37 from the 3-point line for the game and barely squeaked out a victory.
Demarkus Smith (Johnston, SC) had 24 points on only 13 FG attempts and had two huge game winning rebounds. Freshman James Stepp (Greensboro NC), had 18 points on six made 3-point shots (6-9) and three of them were during the most critical time of the game, proving not only can James really shoot the basketball, but he can make game winning shots. James Ashby (New Zealand), was 3-4 from the field and 6-6 from the FT line, had 12 points and added a team high five rebounds and has just been incredibly consistent all year long. Mitch Riggs (Australia), had a game winning 3-point shot and an big time layup in the closing minutes to score 12 points, and also had four rebounds and three assists. Dondray Walker (Fountain Inn, SC), led the team with five assists including two game winning passes when he found Riggs out of a double team and also a lob pass for a dunk by Xavier Holmes, Walker was 3-5 from the three including one from beyond NBA range that quieted a Catawba comeback. Brandon ‘BT” Taylor connected on a corner 3-pointer that was critical and rounded out the six Newberry double figure scorers with 10 points and got maybe the biggest defensive rebound of the game. Freshman Xavier Hill (Irmo, SC) made a huge 3-pointer and sophomore point guard Gerald Evans (Englewood, CA) had five steals, three assists and only one turnover. Xavier Holmes (Great Falls, SC) was also outstanding, making plays on both ends. He had two outstanding assists finding Stepp for open shots on the perimeter. Holmes is such a smart player and was one of many superstars in this game. Catawba scored 65 second half points and Newberry almost matched it with 61.
“Our guys showed heart, determination, character, and a refuse to lose attitude that I have not seen in my time at Newberry,” said Davis. “Catawba could not miss, and it was a game that any team could have easily folded, but our guys rose to the occasion and I could not possibly be more proud of them for their actions and commitment in the final eight minutes of this game.”