MACOMB, Ill. (gohatters.com) -- Freshman Rob Perry scored a game-high 34 points – including 25 in the second half – to lead Stetson to a come-from-behind victory over Western Illinois, Saturday at Western Hall in Macomb, Ill.
Perry finished 12 of 18 from the field, including a 6 of 9 effort from 3-point range. He was 4 of 6 from the free-throw line and added 7 rebounds.
Perry was big for the Hatters down the stretch, scoring seven straight points for the Hatters at one point to turn a 65-64 Stetson edge into a 72-64 advantage with 1:38 to play.
From there, things got tight. Western Illinois (0-2) scored five straight points to get within 72-69 with 38 seconds to play. Mahamadou Diawara's layup briefly silenced the Leathernecks as Stetson took a 74-69 advantage with 19 seconds to go, but Western's C.J. Duff drained a three-pointer nine seconds later to make it a 74-72 game.
The Hatters had a chance to put the game away but made just one of four free throws as Terry Ivery and Perry went to the line on consecutive plays. But Western missed a deep three on the other end and Jahlil Rawley got the rebound and capped the best game of his Stetson career with a pair of free throws with two seconds to go for a 77-72 lead. Western sank a half-court shot just before the buzzer for the final score.
Rawley was a big key for the Hatters on Saturday, scoring 10 points on 4 of 4 shooting and grabbing a career-high 11 rebounds. Diawara finished with 13 points and 4 boards in just 13 minutes.
Zion Young led Western Illinois with 24 points.
The Hatters shot 51 percent for the game (26-51), including a 9 of 20 effort from 3-point range. Stetson out-rebounded Western 39-27, allowing just 8 offensive rebounds.
The Hatters next visit Purdue-Fort Wayne, 7 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 16.
- Rob Perry's 34-point effort is the first 30-point game by any Hatter since Divine Myles scored 30 against Kennesaw State on Fb. 9, 2017
- The last freshman to reach the 30-point mark was Derick Newton, who scored an even 30 against USC Upstate on Jan. 14, 2016
- Perry's 6 three-pointers are the most by a Hatter since Newton also had 6, at Air Force on Nov. 22, 2016
- This was Stetson's first road victory since an 84-80 win at NJIT on Feb. 10, 2018, a span of 17 games
- Diawara was 4 of 4 from the field, including a 3-pointer which gave Stetson a 61-56 lead with 6:15 to play
- Stetson committed 13 turnovers – including just 5 in the second half
ABOUT THE ASUN
The ASUN Conference is an NCAA Division I league with nine member institutions committed to Building Winners for Life. The ASUN meets the challenge of maintaining the highest standards in academic and athletic achievement through a true balance between student and athlete. Six ASUN schools reside in Nielsen Top 50 national media markets, and all nine are in top 80 markets. The ASUN includes a blend of the most prestigious and dynamic private and public institutions in the region: Florida Gulf Coast University, Jacksonville University, Kennesaw State University, Liberty University, Lipscomb University, New Jersey Institute of Technology, University of North Alabama, University of North Florida and Stetson University. Bellarmine University in Louisville, Ky., joins the ASUN for the 2020-21 academic year.
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