ORANGEBURG, SC (December 12, 2023) – The Claflin Panthers (3-4, 1-1 CIAA) left their best effort on the floor, but it was not quite enough when the team took a 72-62 loss to the Lincoln (Pa.) Lions (5-6, 1-0 CIAA). The Panthers put on a strong showing, but foul troubles and a relentless Lions squad proved to be too much for the Panthers to overcome.
As a team, the Panthers played a solid offensive game, but the team could not get the defensive stops that they needed in the hard-fought loss. The Panthers shot a solid 35% (19-of-53) from the floor. The team was especially struggling from the three-point line where the team shot just two-for-18. Claflin junior forward Zion Obanla had a breakout effort in the game with his first career double-double with 13 points with 10 rebounds. Senior guard Jailen Williams added 10 points with four rebounds. Senior forward Timothy McElroy added an eight-point, eight-rebound effort in the game. Claflin junior guard Damerius Wash added seven points off the bench as well.
The Panthers’ struggles started early, but the team stormed back in the second half. However, some late foul troubles proved costly. In the first half, the Panthers fell behind by as many as 11 points midway through the first half before ending the half trailing, 31-37. In the second half, the team was able to claw their way back into the game, taking their first lead, 47-46, after a tremendous dunk from Wash with 10:58 left to play. The Panthers would go ahead by as many as four points, 57-43 after a Williams lay-up with 6:21 left to play. Unfortunately, the Panthers allowed the Lions to regain the lead in the final four minutes and were never able to pull out the win.
With the loss, the Panthers fall to 3-4 overall and 1-1 in Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) play. The team will return to action, Friday, when they take on the Clinton College Golden Bears at the U.S. Virgin Islands HBCU Classic. 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.