NORFOLK, Va. – The Norfolk State men continued their best start this century in impressive fashion Tuesday night, riding Christian Ings’ career-high 31 points to their first-ever win over William & Mary, 91-74, at Echols Hall.
The Spartans improved to 4-0 on the season, their best start since the 1988-89 season, while the Tribe fell to 0-3 in the first-ever meeting between the teams in Norfolk.
NSU displayed its efficiency and athleticism throughout, shooting 57 percent from the floor, 47 percent from deep. Five Spartans scored in double figures on the night, but Ings was the story. The Rider transfer, whose previous career high was 15 coming into this season, hit his first 10 field goals on the way to a 12-for-15 night which included a variety of acrobatic driving layups, two 3-pointers and a pair of dunks. He was perfect from both the free-throw line (5-of-5) and beyond the arc (2-of-2).
W&M responded with three straight 3-pointers by Yuri Covington, who scored a team-high 14 points. But NSU closed the half strong, outscoring the Tribe 14-3 over the final 3:19 of the period. Ings had five points, Cahiem Brown four and Ings capped the run with a dish to Chambers for a slam that made it 47-30 in NSU’s favor.
The second half was more of the same. Ings’ driving layup pushed the lead to 20 for the first time at 60-40. Kris Bankston and Ings threw down vicious dunks on consecutive possessions to get the crowd on its feet. The lead eventually swelled to 31, 87-56, on a jumper by Joe Bryant with 3:58 left.
Ings added four rebounds, four assists and two steals to round out his career night. Chambers scored a career-high 11 points, while Anderson and Bryant also poured in 11 apiece and Brown scored 10. Chambers also contributed five boards, two blocks and three steals, while Bankston scored nine points and also had a pair of blocks and steals. Bryant led NSU with six assists.
Norfolk State hits the road for its next two games, beginning with a 5:30 p.m. matchup Friday against Bowling Green.