Site: Richmond, Ky. (McBrayer Arena)
Score: Eastern Kentucky 86, High Point 67
**********Ahmil Flowers(Grimsley High School) finished with nine points, an assist, and three rebounds.**********
Records: High Point (2-5), 0-2 Big South), Eastern Kentucky (7-2), 1-1 OVC
Next HPU Event: Wednesday, Dec. 30th, vs USC Upstate, 6:00 PM
RICHMOND, Ky— The High Point University men’s basketball team (2-5) dropped a road contest to Eastern Kentucky (7-2) 86-67 on Tuesday (Dec. 22) night. The Panthers were led in scoring by Denny Slay II, who had 12 points. The senior scored all of his points off of the bench in the second half. Eric Coleman Jr. was the other Panther in double figures, as the sophomore scored ten for HPU off of the bench. Coleman also finished with a team-high ten rebounds recording a double-double on the evening.
Eastern Kentucky welcomed back High Point Head Coach Tubby Smith to the state of Kentucky in grand fashion. Before the game started, EKU Head Coach A.W. Hamilton honored Smith with the gift of a maroon EKU blazer.
The Colonels got off to a hot start in the first half jumping out to a 12-0 run to begin the game. The Panthers were able to battle back into the game after the first media timeout. Out of the timeout, Coleman scored a quick four points along with a Jaden House layup which made it 18-11 with 14:37 to go. A Bryson Childress jumper, another House layup, and a few Panther stops made it a 20-15 game with 12:57 left in the first half.
The Colonels got into team foul trouble in the first half as EKU committed 12 team fouls in the first. HPU went 8-10 from the free-throw line in the first. HPU kept the game within ten points for a majority of the first half, with 6:12 to go Childress hit a three-pointer to bring the Panthers within seven. The Colonels used a 15-6 run in the last six minutes of the half which brought their lead to 46-30 at the break.
Childress was HPU’s top performer in the first half with eight points. The freshman shot 2-4 from the three-point line and went 3-5 from the field.
EKU extended their lead further at the start of the second half, with 15:56 left to play in the game The Colonels led by 23. Two minutes before that Slay checked into the game for HPU. In less than two minutes Slay scored seven points off of two jumpers and a three-pointer to make it a thirteen-point game with 12:06 to play. After a High Point stop, John-Michael Wright found a wide open Slay in the corner who splashed down a three to give himself ten points in less than three minutes. Slay’s triple occurred right in front of the High Point bench and he received a big reaction from The Panther sideline as the shot connected.
Out of the under 12 media timeout, EKU went on a 10-0 run and extended their lead out to 20 points.
The Panthers top scorer on the season Wright finished with eight points, six rebounds, and three assists against EKU.
The Panther freshmen continue to impress, Ahmil Flowers(Grimsley High School) finished with nine points, an assist, and three rebounds. Childress finished with eight points while House had nine points, three assists, and three steals.
UP NEXT: Tonight’s game concluded the non-conference slate for HPU. High Point returns home to the Millis Center for its second Big South Conference series of the season. The Panthers will welcome USC Upstate on December 30th and 31st with both games starting at 6:00 PM. Both games will be available to watch on ESPN+.