PARADISE ISLAND, BAHAMAS -- Antwaine Wiggins scored eight straight points to help the College of Charleston take a seven-point lead and the Cougars managed to hold off UNC Asheville, 68-66, Friday in the Battle 4 Atlantis.
Wiggins scored 23 points and snagged six rebounds to send the Cougars into today's fifth-place game at 7 p.m. against the Massachusetts-Utah winner. The game will be televised on HDNet.
Freshman Adjehi Baru added 14 points and seven rebounds, while junior guard Andrew Lawrence scored 11 points and had six assists.
Charleston led much of the second half and was up, 49-42, with 10:45 remaining. But the Cougars were unable to put the Bulldogs away. Wiggins, who missed his first six 3-point attempts, finally got one to fall with 5:14 left to tie the game at 54. That basket sparked the 6-7 senior, who in short order hit another 3-pointer, grabbed a key rebound and scored inside to give Charleston a 59-54 lead with just under four minutes left.
Asheville would not go away, tying the score at 61 with just under two minutes left, but Baru hit a short jumper, freshman Anthony Stitt connected from the outside and Charleston hit 5 of 8 free throws to gain the win.
It was a big turnaround for Wiggins, who scored only two points in Charleston's opening-round loss to Central Florida. Wiggins said Cougars coach Bobby Cremins told the team at halftime to "keep fighting and stay confident."
"I tried to make some shots, play the fundamentals and play defense. Things started to turn around in the second half," Wiggins said.
Cremins praised Wiggins for battling through his shooting woes.
"He never quit. He scored eight straight points for us at a very crucial time," Cremins said. "It was a great win and a very difficult game for us. I feel very fortunate to win. I'm very proud of our team and how we fought tonight."
The Post and Courier's Tommy Braswell compiled this report. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.