Runnin’ Bulldogs to host Spalding Saturday

Dec. 21, 2012 @ 08:30 AM


Gardner-Webb will play its final pre-Christmas game on Saturday, December 22, when it hosts Spalding (Ky.) at 4:30 p.m. in Paul Porter Arena.

Fans will receive free admission to Saturday’s game in exchange for one canned food item for children ages 12 and under and three canned food items for teens and adults.

The canned food drive Saturday is planned in support of the Gardner-Webb Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) and its food drive for the 2012-2013 academic year. The food drive is part of the Big South Conference’s annual SAAC Community Service Initiative.

Gardner-Webb (7-6) is coming off a heartbreaking, 62-60, loss at East Carolina on Tuesday night - with that gritty effort one of several impressive performances for the young Runnin’ Bulldogs in November and December.

Sophomores Donta Harper (14.4 ppg) and Max Landis (11.3 ppg) have continued to bolster Gardner-Webb offensively, with redshirt senior Tashan Newsome (10.9 ppg) also getting back to his All-Big South form after being slowed by an injury in November.

The Runnin’ Bulldogs continue to pace the Big South Conference in wins (7), scoring defense (57.4 ppg) and field goal percentage defense (39.6 percent) and have a season rebounding edge (+2.6 rpg) despite playing several major conference squads.

Spalding (3-4) is a member of the NCAA Division III St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference and is based in Louisville, Ky. The Golden Eagles’ four losses this season have come by a combined 14 points, with a pair of one-point defeats to open the season.

Coach Kevin Gray’s team is paced by high-scoring senior guard Dewhon McAfee, who is pouring in 26.1 points, 3.9 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game. The 6-0 sharpshooter has helped the Golden Eagles average a strong 85.0 ppg as a team. Senior forward Jametrius Brasher (10.6 ppg, 5.4 rig) and junior guard Thomas Blakemore (9.4 ppg) are also putting up solid numbers through seven games.

Spalding knocks down an average of 8.4 three-pointers per game as a team, and is shooting at a strong 41.5 percent clip from long range as a team.