Mount Olive freshman Dominique Reed scored a career-high 20 points and the Trojans opened the second half with a 16-0 run to pull away for an 80-57 Conference Carolinas men's basketball win over visiting Queens University (N.C.) Wednesday night in Kornegay Arena. The win is the Trojans' fourth in a row following a 1-7 start.
Mount Olive (5-7 Overall, 2-4 Conference Carolinas) trailed only briefly in the contest. The Trojans built a double-digit lead midway throw through the first half with a 12-0 run. Kendall Hargrove capped off the spurt when he rebounded his own missed free throw and dunked for a 27-12 cushion with 8:54 left before intermission.
(Click HERE for a clip of Hargrove's dunk off of his missed free throw and his dunk off of a steal late in the second half.)
The Trojans maintained its lead thanks to a smothering full-court pressure defense that forced 17 Royal turnovers in each half. Queens (5-6,2-3) averaged just 14.3 turnovers per contest over its first 10 games.
Mount Olive took a 38-28 lead into the locker room at halftime behind 13 points from Reed and a 17-for-19 effort from the free throw line. After the break, the Trojans turned up the pressure again. It took Queens 5:33 to break its scoring drought. In that time, the Royals turned the ball over 10 times and missed all three shots. Six different players contributed the 16 points for Mount Olive during the span.
Queens got no closer than 21 points the rest of the way.
Reed added six rebounds to his effort. Reed's previous scoring mark was eight points against Lees-McRae last Saturday. Reed was one of four Trojans in double-figures as Darrell Patterson delivered 15 points and six rebounds, Jordan McCain had 13 and Mahamed Ibrahim finished with 10.
Mount Olive begins a two-game road trip next Wednesday at Pfeiffer beginning at 7:30 p.m. After a trip to Erskine January 19, Mount Olive returns to Kornegay Arena to host Belmont Abbey January 24.