DALTON, Ga. (WRCB) -- Preston Earle led three Dalton State figures in double figures and the Roadrunners used a big first-half run to pull away and never look back en route to an historic 68-46 home-opening win over Hiwassee at the Northwest Georgia Trade and Convention Center on Thursday night.
The contest marked the first home game for the Roadrunners (4-0) in 35 years after the once proud junior college program was disbanded in 1978.
Earle finished with 13 points while Ricky Sears added 11 and Dylan Smith chipped in 10. Dalton State owned the glass with a 56-37 rebounding edge and held Hiwassee to just 27.9% shooting (17-of-61) from the floor.
A sluggish start by both teams had the game knotted at 13-all with just seven minutes to play in the first half, but Anthony Hilliard's jumper sparked a 12-0 spurt that helped the Roadrunners open a 27-15 lead at the break.
The lead remained in double figures the entire second half and grew as large as 27 at one point.
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