Warhawks down defending NAIA hoops champs Dalton State 81-70

Junior Romoane Eager led the Auburn Montgomery men’s basketball team to an 81-70 victory over defending National Champion Dalton State on homecoming Saturday afternoon with his first double-double of the season.

NOTES
• With the win, the Warhawks improve to 13-10 (7-6) on the year.
• The Roadrunners falls to 14-10 (6-7) on the season.
• The win improves AUM to 1-3 all-time against Dalton State.
• AUM has now won three of the last four homecoming games they have played.
• AUM led the entire game after a basket three seconds from tip-off to secure the victory.

STANDOUT PERFORMERS
• Eager picked up a career-high 10 rebounds, as well as a career-best 23 points. He also added a steal and finished 8-of-10 from the floor, 3-of-4 from behind the arc and a perfect 4-of-4 from the charity stripe.
• Freshman Desmond DeRamus added 16 points with three assists, eight boards, two blocks and three steals. He finished 8-of-12 from the field.
• Senior Bobby Thompson also added 16 points with seven boards, an assist and a block. Thompson finished 7-of-10 from the field.
• Junior Reagan Eubanks added 13 points for the Warhawks and picked up an assist, two blocks and a team-high four steals. Junior Khalid Banks picked up nine points and four offensive rebounds, and also added a game-high seven assists.
• Jordan Bowling led the Roadrunners with 17 points.
• Marcel Hawkins (16), Deshawn Ruffin (14), Jamaine Burrey (11) and Reed Dungan (10) also finished in double figures.

HOW IT HAPPENED
• AUM jumped out to a game-high 16-point lead, 16-0, after a layup from Banks with 16:03 on the clock.
• Dalton State responded with an 10-1 run to bring the game within seven, 17-10, after a free-throw by Bowling.
• AUM extended the lead to double-digits, 31-20, after a 12-3 run was capped off by a layup from DeRamus with 6:28 remaining in the half.
• Dalton State cut the lead to one, 31-30, after a 10-0 run before a jumper by Thompson in the final minute gave AUM a three-point advantage, 33-30, at the half. AUM led the entire first half.
• AUM scored first in the second half on a three by Eubanks, and a 6-0 run extended the lead to seven, 46-39, after a layup by Eager with 15:08 on the clock.
• Dalton State answered with a 10-4 run to again cut the lead to one, 50-49, after a jumper from Bowling with 11:21 remaining.
• AUM took a nine-point advantage, 64-55, after a 10-3 run capped off by an Eager three with 5:58 remaining in the game.
• Dalton State narrowed the lead to six, 71-65, after a free-throw from Hawkins with 55 seconds on the clock.
• AUM finished a perfect 10-of-10 from the charity stripe in the final minute to close out the 81-70 victory over Dalton State.

INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
• AUM converted 49.2 percent of its shots, finishing 30-of-61 from the floor. The Warhawks hit 6-of-18 (33.3 percent) from behind the arc.
• The Roadrunners shot 39.3 percent from the floor, finishing 24-of-61 from the field. Dalton State hit 9-of-22 (40.9 percent) from behind the arc.
• AUM finished 15-of-20 (75 percent) from the free-throw line. Dalton State shot 13-of-16 (81.3 percent) from the charity stripe.
• AUM won the battle of the boards picking up 42 rebounds to Dalton State’s 32. AUM also picked up more offensive rebounds 13-10.
• AUM outscored Dalton State in the paint 40-22.

QUOTING THE COACH
• “We’ve been passing the ball very well and our defensive is really stepping up,” head coach Michael Cheaney stated. “Our concentration at the free-throw line has really picked up, and I am impressed with how our guys stepped up to the challenge tonight. Romoane really established a tempo today and he did a great job controlling the paint.”

UP NEXT
• The Warhawks will return to action on Saturday, Feb. 13, when they host crosstown rival Faulkner University. The contest is scheduled to tip at 4:00 p.m.