Hot second-half shooting leads short-handed Camels past Radford 73-65

Lorne Merthie
(photo by Will Bratton)
Lorne Merthie (photo by Will Bratton)

RADFORD, VA. – Lorne Merthie scored a season-high 21 points and Eric Griffin added a double-double with 15 points and 11 rebounds to lead short-handed Campbell to a 73-65 win over Radford Thursday night at the Dedmon Center.

Playing without injured point guard Trey Freeman – who ranks 11th among the nation's freshman scoring leaders (14.6) – The Fighting Camels (13-8, 7-2 Big South) won their 3rd-straight game and 3rd in a row on the road.

Campbell made its first 5 field goals of the second half and shot 60.9 percent (14-23) from the floor in the final period to overcome a 30-27 halftime deficit.  Merthie hit 5-of-7 threes and 6-of-6 from the line and scored 19 of his points following intermission.

Darren White added 13 points, 6 rebounds and 4 assists for the Camels, who rode an 11-2 run to a 61-50 lead when Merthie connected from the right wing with 5:41 to play.  Radford trimmed the gap to 61-54 with 4:21 remaining, but Merthie hit a deep triple with 4:00 to go and RU never got closer than 8 down the stretch.

Griffin blocked four shots and Rico Ferguson added 4 assists for Campbell, which has won 4 of its last 5 games.

Javonte Green led Radford (4-17, 1-8) with 16 points and 7 rebounds, while R.J. Price added 14 points, 5 assists and 4 steals.

The Highlanders made just 39.6 percent (21-53) of their shots on the night.

Radford led by as many as eight (22-14) in the first half before the Camels went on an 11-3 run to tie the score at 25.  Griffin ended a 4:55 Camel drought to start the flurry and capped the burst with a dunk with 2:36 remaining in the half.

Radford led 30-27 at the break as Campbell hit just 10-of-25 shots (.400) and committed 10 turnovers.

Campbell returns home Saturday for a 3:30 p.m. tip-off against VMI.