The Phoenix were up 41-31 heading into the second period and Carver College tried to make a late comeback cutting the deficit to just nine points with a basket by Wasiu Yusuf with 15:52 remaining. A trifecta by Rhyan Townes helped CU (7-6) continue to build onto the advantage and two points from Pierce off a Cougar turnover pulled the Phoenix ahead 53-38.
Two points from Chester and Diondrey Holt, Jr., was followed with a 7-2 run by Carver College cutting the Cougar deficit to 12 with 5:47 remaining, 60-58.
11 straight points for Carver College helped them pull within just three points of Cumberland, 60-57., seven of those points coming from Saveyon Edwards during the run. Cumberland did not allow the Cougars to score again, and Chester’s three-point play with 50 seconds left secured a 63-57 victory.
Reid Pierce recorded his the first double-double of his career posting 10 points and 12 boards. Andrew Rogan collected 14 points and Holt, Jr., tallied 12.
The Phoenix shot just shy of 50 percent from the field (49.1) and made four triples. The squad made 11 points off of Cougar turnovers and scored 10 points off the bench.
Both teams rallied point-for-point in the opening minutes of the game tying the score twice before Cumberland jumped ahead with two free throws and a triple by Rogan, 14-8. The Phoenix tacked on five more points before a basket by Chris Deny ended the run.
Carver College put together a 9-2 run in the final minutes of the half to pull within two points, 23-21. Pierce and Townes combined for nine of Cumberland’s next 11 points and a basket by Holt, Jr., with one second remaining in the half sent the Phoenix ahead, 41-31.
Three Cougar players scored in double-digits, and Deny and Edwards combined for 44 points in the game. Malique Gibbons finished with 10 points, three rebounds and two assists.
Cumberland will return home to take on Stillman College on Thursday at 8 p.m.