December 19, 2018 / 2:41 AM / 6 months ago

Thomas, Simms power Clemson past Charleston Southern

Elijah Thomas scored 25 points and had 14 rebounds, both season highs, to power Clemson to a 78-51 victory against Charleston Southern on Tuesday night in a non-conference game in Clemson, S.C.

Clemson improved to 8-3 while Charleston Southern, which has lost five in a row, slipped to 4-7.

Thomas made 9 of 12 shots from the floor and 7 of 10 free throws en route to his fourth double-double of the season. The senior forward, who missed his career scoring high by one point, is shooting 77 percent over the Tigers’ last five games and scoring at an 18.2 clip.

Clemson sophomore forward Aamir Simms scored 15 points, 11 in the second half.

Senior guard Shelton Mitchell added 14 points, including the 1,000th of his career, for the Tigers, who played a third consecutive game without leading scorer Marcquise Reed.

Reed, who averages 19.4 points per game, remains sidelined with a knee injury suffered against Saint Peter’s on Dec. 4 and is questionable for Saturday’s game at in-state rival South Carolina.

Junior guard Christian Keeling paced Charleston Southern with 25 points. He connected on 9 of 14 shots, including 5 of 6 from 3-point range.

Freshman guard Dontrell Shuler scored 14 points for the Buccaneers, who never led.

Clemson led by as many as 11 in the first half before settling for seven-point halftime lead, 35-27.

The Tigers essentially put the game away by opening the second half with an 18-0 run as Simms scored 11 points in a span of 2:20. Clemson’s lead swelled to as many as 28 points, 59-31, with 13:28 remaining and the Buccaneers never drew closer than 22 points again.

Clemson shot 58 percent from the floor while holding Charleston Southern to 33.9 percent shooting. The Tigers outrebounded Charleston Southern 36-27.

—Field Level Media

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