After sleepwalking 34 minutes, Howard came alive behind the ball-handling of substitute guard Jeff Beard and the shooting of freshman forward Bernard Perry to down visiting Campbell, 73-68, last night.
Howard trailed, 58-53, with six minutes remaining and seemed to be in dire straits as its running game was reduced to a creep. The situation further deteriorated when guard Rodney Wright, whose floor play had kept Howard close, picked up his fourth foul. Beard came in and scored on a twisting drive through the lane that started the Bison on a 14-4 burst. Perry made three long jump shots in the rally.
With the score 65-60, Campbell guard Darrell Mauldin connected on two pressure shots from the top of the key. Fred Whitfield added another to put the Camels back on top, 66-65.
Perry launched the final rally. With 1:25 remaining, he hit on a long jumper and made a steal, setting up a layup by Louis Wilson to sew up the game.
"I rely on him (Beard) just to come in and play smart ball," said Bison Coach A. B. Williamson. "He did just that tonight. We were coming off an emotional win over George Mason and we needed Jeff's experience to calm us down."
Williamson was particularly pleased with Perry's play. "He is only a freshman and he is already taking our clutch shots." Perry finished with 14 points.
The Bison were led by James Ratiff with 23 points from front court while Fred Whitfield was the game's high scorer with 26 points for Campbell.
The first half was a shootout between Whitfield and Ratiff. Whitfield, making 10 of 14 chances, appeared unstoppable.
Campbell jumped to a 12-7 lead and Howard spent the remainder of the half trying to catch up.
Camapbell went up, 29-21, with seven minutes remaining in the half, mainly on the shoulders of Whitfield, who scored 16 first-half points on a series of swift moves to the basket. After abandoning their two-three zone, the Bison forced five straight Campbell turnovers and ran off a 7-0 spurt. However Campbell fought back and went into the locker room with a 34-30 lead. h