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Keydets fall in Big South opener

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Staff Report
VMI sports: www.vmikeydets.com

Freshman guards Danny Nieman and Kierre Greenwood combined for 42 points and redshirt senior Joseph Harris added 20 points and 10 rebounds as Coastal Carolina opened Big South play with a 111-97 win over VMI on Thursday evening at Cameron Hall.

The Chanticleers (6-2, 1-0 Big South) scored 82 of their 111 points in the paint while defending their lane with 10 blocked shots. Harris contributed four of those rejections, becoming Coastal Carolina’s all-time blocks leader in the process, ending the game 116 with in his career.

VMI (3-3, 0-1 Big South) connected on 13 of their 30 attempts from beyond the arc for a season-best 43.3 percent clip. The Keydets, however, were outrebounded 50-35 and made a season-low six steals in the team’s first conference-opening loss since the 2006-07 season.

“I’m pleased with the way we shot it from three, but we had no answer for them on the glass,” said VMI head coach Duggar Baucom. “Six steals for us is by far the lowest the year and probably 15 turnovers (forced), too. They do a good job of spacing and we just didn’t force our will upon them. It was exactly the other way around. But I’m proud of how hard our guys played. Ron Burks was stellar. He was the one guy you could count on that was going to stick his nose in and get rebounds, and he did.”

Leading the way for the Keydets was junior guard Austin Kenon, whose 31 points represented a season high. Sophomore Ron Burks notched his second double-double of the season with 11 points and 11 rebounds, while Michael Sparks contributed 18 points off the bench.

2008 Waynesboro High School graduate Nick Gore had three points in eight minutes.

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