HARRISONBURG, VA --- The Royals used good shooting and stingy defense to run away to a 95-70 win over Ferrum College Wednesday night in Harrisonburg. EMU's basketball men improve to 6-5 as they prepare for a few days off for Christmas before playing a D-I James Madison next week Wednesday.
Start time for the game at JMU's Convocation Center is 7:00pm.
The non-conference win over Ferrum (6-6) was a solid way for EMU's basketball men to finish up an up-and-down first half of the season. The Panthers were coming off a pair of wins in USA South play from the previous weekend, and were also sporting victories over ODAC teams Washington and Lee, Emory & Henry and Bridgewater.
The Runnin Royals started their hot shooting in the pre-game warmups, tearing the net on their basket and forcing the coaching staff to put on a new net. RaShawn Latimer (Warrenton, Va./Kettle Run) showed the pre-game was no fluke, converting a lay-up 11 seconds in and following with a three pointer to put EMU up 5-0 after just 44 seconds.
Ferrum later used a 6-0 run to skip in front 14-13, but that turned out to be the only lead of the night for the Panthers.
Eastern Mennonite quickly took over and twice had 10-point leads before rolling into halftime with a 43-36 advantage.
In the second half, the Runnin Royals opened with a signature long-range barrage, getting a trio of threes to bump the margin to 52-39. From there, the men turned on the defense and attacked the hoop to put the game away.
Mark Loving (Woodford, Va./Caroline) sunk a free throw to cap an 11-0 run, ballooning the lead to 63-42 with 12:37 to play. Khalil Davis (Harrisonburg, Va./Spotswood) put in a lay-up at the midway point of the half, finishing another 6-0 jab for what was at that point the biggest lead of the game at 69-46.
All said over the first 10 minutes of the half, Eastern Mennonite outscored Ferrum 26-10 to effectively land the knockout punch. The Panthers got within 78-65 with 4:45 remaining, but the men scored the next five to squash any thoughts of a comeback. EMU then put in the final eight points of the game for the 25-point margin.
Both teams shot better than 53% from the floor in the first half, but the Royals held the Panthers to just 33% shooting in the second. EMU finished with a 48.3% to 42.4% advantage for the game, including 44.0% to 35.7% from outside.
The men feasted at the free throw line, sinking 26-of-30 attempts compared to just 10-19 for Ferrum. Both the attempts and makes were season highs for EMU.
Latimer led the charge with 19 points, tying his career high for the second straight game. He was 3-for-3 from three-point range. Isaiah Harris-Winn (Frederick, Md./St. Maria Goretti) was good for 13 points and six rebounds, while freshman Josh Good (Luray, Va./Luray) had his best collegiate game with 10 points, nine rebounds and four assists. Each number was a career best for Good.
Davis finished with 11 points on just five shot attempts and Maleke Jones (Charles Town, W.V./Washington) added a team high five assists. Darius Johnson (Altavista, Va./Altavista) put up eight points and five rebounds in 11 minutes.
Marcus Huff scored 12 points to lead Ferrum off the bench. D'Andre Mullen had eight points and seven assists.