Versatile Naim Muhammad has career game in Shepherd win
It wasn’t many games ago that Naim Muhammad became Shepherd’s point guard in an offense that doesn’t have a half-court general to orchestrate the team’s offense. In his new role, Muhammad did have the basketball more often and his shots were more frequent and so was his scoring, number of assists and effect on the game.
Most importantly, Shepherd started winning with some regularity.
In his most memorable overall performance as a Ram, Muhammad scored 37 points, had seven rebounds and used his straight-ahead speed and quickness to lead Shepherd to a 94-83 conference win over visiting Charleston.
It was Shepherd’s third consecutive win that could be tied to Muhammad’s increased ball-handling role and number of minutes played.
The lithe 6-foot-4 junior’s shooting accuracy was the main reason the Rams made 50.8 percent of their field goal tries, including a superb 12-for-25 showing from three-point range.
Shepherd’s smallest starter, Skyler Roman, made 10-of-11 free throws, had seven rebounds and scored 22 points as the Rams smoothly moved away from only a three-point lead at the half to an 11-point victory. Ryan McTavish — quiet for much of the opening half — was at his best when the Rams were raining “3’s” on the Golden Eagles while breaking to a double-figure lead in the last eight minutes. McTavish had 14 points and six rebounds. Steffen Davis showed 12 more points for the Rams, who moved their record to 14-11.
But it was Muhammad and his 12-for-20 showing from the field and 8-of-9 free throw attempts who stoked the Shepherd express on a comfortable night where the Rams continued a slow, upward movement in the Mountain East standings.