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Cris Paez
Cris Paez led the Bears with 15 points.
photo courtesy of Lenoir-Rhyne Athletics

Lenoir-Rhyne Men’s Basketball Falls to Chowan to Open Season

The Lenoir-Rhyne Men’s Basketball Team dropped a tough 76-72 decision to Chowan on Saturday night in the Bears season opener. This was the first game of the weekend SAC/Conference Carolinas/PBC Crossover Challenge and is hosted by Emory & Henry.

Lenoir-Rhyne was led by Cris Paez in his LR debut. Paez scored 15 points and went 6-of-8 from the field and added three rebounds and three assists. Chase Mebane went 6-for-12 for the Bears and finished with 14 points and five boards. Jaquias Franklin finished with seven points, four boards, three assists, a block and a steal.

The Bears shot 16-of-27 in the second half, converting on 59.3 percent of their field goal attempts and went 4-for-6 from long range. Chowan hit 12 threes on the night and held a 16-5 edge in second chance points.

The LR bench outscored Chowan’s 27-10. However, the Hawks relied on two big scoring efforts. RJ Wilson had 25 points and 13 rebounds and Daylan Askew finished with 22 points and five assists.

This was just the fourth all-time matchup between LR and Chowan with the Hawks holding a 3-1 edge.

The Bears five leading scorers are all newcomers to the program.

LR trailed by as many as 13 in the second half but would pull even at 49. The Bears even trailed by nine with 1:26 to go but had it to a one possession game down the stretch.

The Bears will return to action Sunday when they take on Francis Marion at 5 p.m.