Hawks grind out win over Converse

Published 9:20 am Monday, January 9, 2023

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MURFREESBORO – The Chowan men’s basketball team defended their home court with an 83-74 victory to hand Converse their fifth straight loss in Conference Carolinas action here Saturday afternoon.

Chowan shot 29.8% from the floor in the opening half after not playing since December 19.

Jay Estime collected 21 points and eight rebounds, scoring all but three of his points from deep. Daylan Askew added 15 points, while Isaac Hippolyte scored 14 points. Hippolyte also hauled in eight rebounds along with eight from RJ Wilson to go with nine points.

The Hawks swatted 11 shots led by Skyler Davies and RJ Wilson with three blocks each.

Trailing 10-9 in the early going, Chowan went on an 8-0 run. Veigar Alexandersson posted a layup followed by a transition trey by Askew. Wilson finished up the run with a three-point play to lead 18-9.

Askew scored the next four points for the Hawks along with a layup by Hippolyte as Chowan’s lead reached double figures, 24-13.

Over the next 4:23, Converse regained the lead with a 12-0 run to go up 25-24. Hippolyte ended the run with a pair from the stripe. Wilson added a point before Donavon Martin hammered home a dunk to lead 29-27. Askew scored in transition and Wilson tallied another from the stripe as Chowan led 32-31 at the intermission.

Converse opened the second half with four quick points before Christian Koonce scored in the paint. Estime connected from the stripe as Davies finished off the alley-oop from Estime and added the free throw to lead 38-35.

Hippolyte tallied the next four points for the Hawks to maintain the advantage before Askew went coast-to-coast for the score. Estime would start to heat up from deep, connecting on back-to-back possessions. A layup in transition by Koonce pushed the lead to 52-43.

Converse cut the deficit to three, 57-54, with 6:55 remaining. Just over a minute later, the Valkyries cut it to two, 60-58, the closest Converse got the rest of the way.

Preston Le Gassick and Estime knocked down triples to give the Hawks a cushion. Wilson and Le Gassick added a basket each to offset the attack by Converse, 70-64.

A quick 6-0 run by the Hawks pushed the lead back to double-figures, 78-68, as Estime started the run with a triple. Askew finished off the three-point play with just over a minute remaining.

Chowan finished off the scoring at the stripe as Converse was unable to make shots down the stretch.

Chowan (7-5 overall; 5-2 in league play) welcomes nationally-ranked UNC Pembroke to town on Wednesday, Jan. 11. Tip-off is slated for 7 pm.