Trojans bounce back against Campbell

Published 12:00 am Sunday, January 21, 2001

Sports Writer

After two straight conference losses, Troy State faced a must-win situation against Campbell last Thursday and Matt Holman and Lemayn Wilson made sure the Trojans losing streak would come to an end.

Holman scored 21 of his 24 points in the first half, including five three-pointers and Wilson added 19 to help the Trojans rout Campbell, 89-71 at Trojan Arena.

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"It was a good win for us because it gave us a good feeling again," said TSU head coach Don Maestri. "Last week we lost two in a row. It’s important to get the winning feeling back, especially going into a game like Saturday night’s game against Georgia State. You have to have some kind of momentum going into that game and that’s why this win was very important to our basketball team."

"I thought Matt Holman and Robert Rushing played about as well as you can play. Matt shot the ball extremely well. Robert directed the team and made some excellent passes, alley-oop dunks and setting up people for three-pointers and he played excellent defense. Both of them played great basketball tonight. And Lemayn Wilson had a very good game."

Rushing finished the game with 12 points and dished out a career-high 10 assists.

Campbell jumped out to a 7-5 lead, but Wilson dunked a pass from Robert Rushing to tie the game and Holman followed with three straight three-pointers, pushing the Trojans lead out to 16-7.

TSU held the Fighting Camels scoreless for a 4:24 stretch and extended the lead to 29-15 on another dunk by Wilson, courtesy of another pass from Rushing. Wilson scored 10 points in the first half, all coming on dunks.

Wilson said his high-flying style helped him get in the flow of the game.

"That got me going. At first I missed a couple shots and I had to get myself together. Coach told to take my time and it worked out and we won the game."

Campbell cut the lead to four after two three-pointers by Adam Fellers late in the first half, but Holman scored 10 of the last 12 Trojan points, including a three-pointer at the buzzer for a 42-33 halftime lead. The Trojans held Campbell to just 33 percent shooting in the first half.

The Fighting Camels cut the lead to 47-42 after a basket by Derek Gray with 15:18 left in the game, but the Trojans would pull away for good on back-back-back three-pointers from Wilson, Jacova Jenkins and Donnie Pemberton during a 13-3 run midway through the second half. TSU hit eight three-pointers in the second half and shot 50 percent from downtown for the game.

The Trojans took their biggest lead of the night at 78-58 after a basket by Rushing with 4:21 remaining in the game.

Fellers lead the Fighting Camels with 18 points and Gray added 13. The Trojans defense held Campbell to 39.7 percent shooting from the field.

"We knew we had to come out and get a win, especially at home," Holman said. "We had a nice crowd and we had a lot of energy in the gym tonight. We knew it was a big game for us and we needed a win."

"It’s all about effort," Holman said. "If we come out and play with effort, the ball usually will bounce your way when you are playing hard. When your playing sluggish, like we played on the road, things just don’t go your way."