ORANGEBURG, SC (December 10, 2022) – The Claflin Panthers (8-0, 1-0 CIAA) got a dramatic entrance into Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) play with an 82-80 win over the Shaw Bears (5-6, 0-1 CIAA). Claflin junior guard Bryson Dennis hit a running jumper in the final seconds of the game to pull out the win.
The Panthers took the win behind a tremendous overall effort. Four Panthers reached double-digit scoring in the game with Dennis leading the way. He scored a game-high 19 points while junior guard Chase Lane added 14 points. Fellow junior guard DaiJohn Stewart added 11 points.
The Panthers controlled much of the game, but the team had to fend a furious comeback effort by the Bears to claim the win. In the first half, the Panthers went ahead by as many as 18 points, 42-24, after a Dennis jumper with 00:22 left in the half. Things continued to go the Panthers’ way in the second half as the tea, built a 52-31 lead after a three-pointer from senior forward Shamarie McLeod. Though the Panthers remained in the lead, the team saw their lead steadily decline until a Shaw lay up with 4:04 left to play left the Panthers trailing, 75-76. In the final minutes, the Panthers and Bears went back and forth trading leads until a Shaw jumper with 1:20 left to play tied the game, 80-80. It was then that the stage was set. With 11 seconds left to play, the Panthers held the ball until the final eight seconds of play. From there, Dennis hit a lay-up with just over a second left to play sealed the win.
With the win, the Panthers improve to 8-0 overall and 1-0 in CIAA play. The team will return to action, Thursday, when the team hosts the Elizabeth City State Vikings. For more information on Panthers basketball, contact the Claflin University Office of Athletics Media Relations at (803) 535-5548 or log on to www.athletics.claflin.edu.