Faison Hits Three-Pointer at Final Buzzer to Lead Pacers to Victory Over Catawba
SALISBURY, N.C. - Byron Faison hit a three-pointer at the final buzzer to give USC Aiken a thrilling 92-90 victory over Catawba in its first game of the Salisbury Roundball Classic at Goodman Gym on the campus of Catawba College.
The Pacers down by one at 90-89 with 14 seconds left, USC Aiken worked the ball up the hardwood after two crucial free throw misses by Catawba's Dominick Reid. The Pacers moved the ball around and Mark Brown (Charlotte, N.C./Hickory Grove Christian) had a chance for the win on a three-point attempt. He did not connect, but the hero from USC Aiken's season-opening win over Life in Sterling Council (Camden, S.C./Camden) opportunistically grabbed the offensive rebound to give the Pacers new life.
Faison (Sumter, S.C./Winthrop) took advantage, knocking down the game-winning three-pointer with no time left on the game clock to give the Pacers their second straight come-from-behind final seconds victory of the 2009-10 season.
The cardiac Pacers are now 2-0 on the young 2009-10 season. The loss was the first of the year for Catawba, which is now 2-1 on the year.
The game began with the Indians taking control early, leading by as many as six points in the early going. The Pacers would rebound down the stretch of the first stanza to take a seven-point 43-36 lead at intermission.
The Pacers were up by as many as 10 points in the second half, but Catawba garnered its first lead of the second half on a dunk by Donzell Williams with 4:59 left in the game. The Pacers would fall behind by as many as five points (86-81) in the waning minutes of the game. Down by three with just under a minute left, Rashad Flowers (Charleston, S.C./Garrett Academy) cut the Catawba lead to one with a lay-up with 49 seconds left in the game. After two Catawba free throws, Council connected on two of his own to set the score at 90-89 with 37 seconds left.
Reid's two misses gave USC Aiken some hope in the contest and Faison eventually made the Indians pay for the misses with the game-winning three-pointer at the buzzer.
USC Aiken finished the win over Catawba shooting almost 50 percent (49.3 percent). The Pacers knocked down 34 field goals in the victory. Catawba shot 44.8 percent (26-for-58) in the game.
Four different Pacers finished in double figures in the victory over the Indians. Flowers claimed the only double-double in the contest with 11 points and 10 rebounds. He was 5-for-7 from the floor in the game.
USC Aiken point guard Re'mon Nelson (Canal Winchester, Ohio/Canal Winchester) nailed six three-pointers in the game en route to a game-high 22 points.
Faison was right behind Nelson with 18 total points. He was 7-for-12 from the field in the game. Seth Leonard (York, Pa./William Penn) was the final Pacer in double figures with 14 points. Leonard shot 50 percent from the floor in the contest.
All five Catawba starters finished in double figures with Donald Rutherford leading the way with 17 points.
The game with the Indians of Catawba was a rematch of last year's NCAA Division II Southeast Regional semifinal that the Pacers also took, 85-72.
USC Aiken will close out the Salisbury Roundball Classic by squaring off against Pfeiffer at 4 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 21.
The USC Aiken-Pfeiffer contest will be able to be followed through live stats. To access the live stats through gocatawbaindians.com, click on the live stats link on the pacersports.com upcoming schedule on the main page once the game has started.