Dec. 19, 2006
HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Sophomore Craig Craft led five Southern Miss players in double figures with a career-high 17 points to lead the Golden Eagles to an 80-56 victory over Reinhardt College here Tuesday night at Reed Green Coliseum.
Joining Craft in double-digit scoring was freshman Jarvis Hill with 15 points, freshman Sai'Quon Stone with 13 points and junior Demar Dotson and freshman Andre Stephens with 11 points each. The Golden Eagles have now won nine straight home games dating back to the final home contest of last season - the longest string since the 2000-01 club won its first nine at Green Coliseum to open that campaign.
"The offense was the best part of our game tonight," said third-year coach Larry Eustachy of his team's sharp-shooting ability against Reinhardt. "We passed up good shots for great ones."
The Golden Eagles finished the evening by shooting 57.4 percent, hitting 27-of-47 shots. That includes converting 11 of their first 13 shots early and finishing the first half with a 66.7 shooting percentage (14-of-21) to take a 41-24 lead at the intermission.
Southern Miss pounded the ball inside and used a solid transition game as they scored 34 points in the paint and 30 points off of 16 Reinhardt turnovers.
Craft, from Raleigh, Miss., hit six-of-eight shots from the floor, including his lone 3-point attempt, an was 4-of-6 from the free throw line.
Carl Williams led the Reinhardt Eagles with a game-high 24 points, while Victor Stowes tallied 11 points. This game for Reinhardt, a NAIA institution, was considered an exhibition for that school.
The Golden Eagles now take to the road to face Bradley (8-3), who defeated Loyola-Chicago 82-73 in Peoria, Ill., Tuesday night. Southern Miss has lost both previous meetings with the Braves.