Rams remain in Southern Division hunt with key road win

RALEIGH, N.C. – Winston-Salem State University started quickly and never trailed as the Rams survived a late push from St. Augustine's University for a 62-59 win in Raleigh, NC at Emery Gym on the campus of St. Augustine's University Saturday evening.

With the win, WSSU improves to 13-9 overall, 8-4 in the CIAA and 4-2 in the Southern Division, while St. Augustine's to 11-11 overall, 4-8 in the CIAA and 1-5 in the Southern Division.

Winston-Salem State used one of their staples of the season, starting quickly, as they scored first and by the time the first two minutes of the game had rolled off the clock, they had taken a five point lead at 7-2.

The Rams would continue their solid play and had increased the lead to seven points by the 10 minute mark at 20-13 on a layup from Javan Wells.

By the two minute mark, WSSU had increased their lead to 15 point, 37-22, but the Falcons would use a 6-0 run the rest of the half to cut into the Rams lead, but WSSU would take a 37-28 lead at the half.

Through the first 20 minutes, WSSU had dominated the points off of turnovers (12-5) and held a slight 16-14 advantage in point in the paint.

Back to back jumpers from Preston Ross, III got the Rams going in the second half. New addition to the WSSU team, football player, Quinton Alton scored back to back buckets inside the paint to give the Rams a 13 point lead at 48-35 with 12:29 left in the game.

The Rams maintained a double digit advantage and led 57-47 with 5:53 left, before the Falcons would make one last ditch effort run at WSSU.

St. Augustine's would use an 11-3 run over the next five minutes to pull within two at 60-58 with just under a minute remaining.

The Falcons would trim the lead to one point with five seconds left, but Quinton Alton would sink two free throws with three seconds left to give Winston-Salem State the 62-59 win.

Marquez Jones led the Rams with 14 points, while also picking up four rebounds and four steals. WyKevin Bazemore added 13 points, seven rebounds, three assists, two steals and a blocked shot. Preston Ross, III finished with nine points, while pulling down 10 rebounds and Javan Wells also added nine points to go with five rebounds, a steal and a blocked shot.  Tyre Desmore chipped in seven points, three assists and a steal.

St. Augustine's was led by Jonathan Crawley who finished with 14 points and 11 rebounds, while Amere May added 12 points and Tashaun Stockdale chipped in 11 points and six rebounds.

Winston-Salem State will return home on Wednesday night, February 12th, to face the Bears of Shaw University in another tough CIAA Southern Division matchup.