Western Carolina 62, UNCG 59
CULLOWHEE, N.C. - Struggling from the field on Saturday afternoon, Western Carolina stepped to the charity stripe and drained a season-high 31 free throws to edge UNCG, 62-59, in Southern Conference action in the Ramsey Center.
WCU (7-9, 4-0 SoCon) claimed its third-straight victory on the season despite shooting just 32-percent from the floor including a season-low 1-for-13 from beyond the 3-point arc. With the long-range shots not falling, the Catamounts put the ball on the deck and drove, outscoring UNCG 24-to-18 in the paint and earning 38 free throw attempts - the most for a WCU team since 2009.
Redshirt junior Trey Sumler scored 11 of his team-high 17 points from the free throw line to lead the Catamounts with junior post Preston Ross also finishing in double figures with 12 points. Brandon Boggs gave WCU a lift in the second half with seven of his nine points coming after intermission, while Tawaski King tallied eight points and seven rebounds in the win.
Sophomore James Sinclair finished with seven points and a game-high eight rebounds.
Western Carolina took a game-high lead of seven points midway through the first half on an 8-0 spurt, capped by a jumper by Boggs at the 7:24 mark before managing a one-point edge at halftime on two Ross free throws, 24-23.
UNCG (3-11, 1-2 SoCon) took control of a see-saw affair, leading for nearly 10 minutes midway through the second half and taking its game-high lead of six points on three separate occasions.
Tied at 48 with 2:39 to play, WCU took the lead for good on a pair of charity tosses by freshman Mike Brown, and matched the game-high advantage of seven on free throws by Sumler with 1:10 remaining. But the Spartans would not go away as Derrell Armstrong scored eight UNCG points inside the final 30 seconds to keep the pressure on. The Catamounts hit 6-of-8 from the foul line during that same time frame to hold on for the victory as Armstrong's potential game-tying 3-pointer at the buzzer missed hard off the back of the rim.
All told, Western Carolina scored its final 17 points from the free throw line with its final field goal coming with 5:01 remaining in regulation on a lay-up by King.
Armstrong scored 17 of his game-high 25 points in the second half, including connecting on three 3-pointers. Nicholas Paulos also sank three 3-pointers and finished with 10 points, while David Williams finished with nine points and six rebounds to lead UNCG.
UNCG was without two starters in Korey Van Dussen (wrist) and Trevis Simpson (concussion) - the latter of which entered the weekend leading the SoCon in scoring at 18.0 points per game.
Both teams committed 15 turnovers on the afternoon with WCU scoring 18 points off those giveaways while UNCG converted for 12 points. The Catamounts won the battle of the boards, 41-to-35, with both squads pulling down 13 offensive rebounds.
College of Charleston 86, Chattanooga 59
CHARLESTON, S.C. --- The Chattanooga Mocs (7-10, 2-2 SoCon) dropped an 86-59 decision at the College of Charleston (11-5, 3-1 SoCon) Saturday afternoon in TD Arena. The loss ends a four-game road swing at 2-2 for UTC.
It was all College of Charleston from the outset. The Cougars hit their first five shots building a 20-2 lead. Farad Cobb and Ronrico White combined for eight straight points to cut it to 10, 20-10, but the Mocs would get no closer. CofC posted a 30-11 run to build its lead to 29, 50-21, before Eric Robertson's three-pointer sent the teams into the locker room with UTC down 50-24.
The second half was little different for the Mocs. CofC led by as many as 35, 79-44, on two Trent Wideman free throws with 7:40 remaining. UTC scored the final eight points of the game with Robertson closing the game the same way he ended the opening 20 minutes, with a three-pointer.
White led the Mocs with 10 points. The squad shot a meager 35 percent (21-60) with the four post players accounting for 28.6 percent (8-28) from the field. Gee McGhee added a season-high four steals.
Anthony Stitt led all scorers with 20 points for the Cougars. He was joined in double figures by Willis Hall (13), Adjehi Baru (13), Anthony Thomas (11) and Trent Wiedeman (11). Andrew Lawrence added 10 assists.
CofC was dominant inside from start-to-finish. It tallied a 14-rebound advantage on the glass, 46-32. The Cougars grabbed more defensive rebounds (35) than the Mocs had total (32). They also doubled UTC's with a 40-20 margin on points in the paint.
Appalachian State 80, Elon 70
BOONE, N.C. - Nathan Healy led five scorers in double-figures and Appalachian State University men's basketball continued its strong play over the last month with an 80-70 victory over visiting Elon on Saturday afternoon at the Holmes Center.
With its fifth victory in the last six games, Appalachian State (6-8, 2-1 SoCon) surged past Elon (8-7, 1-2 SoCon) into second place in the Southern Conference North Division standings.
Appalachian never led and trailed by as many as 12 points on three different occasions in the first half but used a 15-3 run over the final 4:57 of the opening period to send the teams into the locker room knotted at 34-34.
Healy keyed the run with a layup to pull the Mountaineers within 10 points (31-21) with just over four minutes to play as the Apps scored eight in a row to cut the deficit to just three points (31-28) on a fast break dunk by Mike Neal with 1:41 to play in the half.
The Phoenix was able to put a stop to the run when Jack Isenbarger connected from deep to make it 34-28, but back-to-back threes from Chris Burgess and Healy to end the half made it 34-34 at the break.
Neither team led by more than three points over the first eight minutes of the second half but keyed by three-pointers from Tevin Baskin, Neal and Healy, the Mountaineers took a 57-51 advantage with 8:17 to go and led the rest of the way. Elon closed within two points with 5:26 remaining but Appalachian made 7-of-9 free throws and outscored the Phoenix 17-9 down the stretch to claim the double-digit triumph.
Healy led the Mountaineers with 22 points and ripped down eight boards while Baskin recorded a double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds. Neal finished with 17 points and was a perfect 3-of-3 from long range while Jay Canty (12) and Tab Hamilton (10) also scored in double figures.
Elon was led by Ryley Beaumont's game-high 26 points and Lucas Troutman poured in 14 for the Phoenix, but the Mountaineers limited Isenbarger to just nine points, including a 1-for-7 mark from beyond the arc.
On the night, App State shot 49.1 percent (27-of-55) and nailed half of their three-point attempts (10-of-20) while grabbing 32 rebounds. Elon shot 50.0 percent (28-of-56) but was just 4-of-20 from deep and grabbed 33 rebounds.
Davidson 81, Furman 73
GREENVILLE, S.C. - Senior Clint Mann tallied a career-high 20 points to lead four Wildcats in double figures as Davidson battled past Furman, 81-73, in Southern Conference men's basketball action before a crowd of 2,459 Saturday on YP.com Court at Timmons Arena.
With the win, Davidson improved to 9-6 overall and remained undefeated in SoCon play at 4-0. Furman slipped to 3-11 overall and fell to 0-3 in the league with its sixth straight loss.
The Paladins, who matched Davidson by shooting 52 percent from the field in the first half, raced out to a 30-17 lead with four treys in the first 12 minutes and a breakaway jam from Charlie Reddick with 7:45 remaining in the opening period. Davidson answered with a 26-8 run as Mann, who scored 18 of his career-best 20 points in the first half, poured in 12 points over the final seven minutes of the period and drained two triples in the final 2:30 of the half to give the Wildcats a 43-38 halftime lead.
Furman started quickly in the second half with five straight points from Bobby Austin to knot the game at 43-43, and the lead changed hands four times in the first nine minutes of the period. After Colin Reddick put Furman in front 57-56 by converting in the paint and finishing a three-point play at the foul line with 12:47 left, Davidson held the Paladins to just one field goal over the next eight minutes while fashioning a 13-4 run to claim a 69-61 advantage.
The Paladins trimmed the Davidson lead back to six points, but Nik Cochran and Chris Czerapowicz each hit three-pointers in the final five minutes to push the Furman deficit to double digits as Davidson claimed its 15th victory in the last 16 series meetings.
Mann connected on 6-of-9 shots, including 2-of-3 beyond the arc, for his career-high 20 points while Cochran drained all three of his long range attempts to score 17 points. Jake Cohen and Czerapowicz added 14 and 13 points, respectively, for the Wildcats.
Davidson shot 48 percent from the floor, made 10-of-23 three-point attempts and converted on 15-of-18 trips to the charity stripe. The Wildcats compiled a 34-30 edge on the glass and outscored Furman 18-6 in second chance points with the help of 11 offensive rebounds.
Colin Reddick finished 5-of-8 from the field and 8-of-9 at the foul line to tally a team-best 18 points for Furman. Freshman Larry Wideman totaled 13 points while fellow freshman Kendrec Ferrara added 10 points and a career-high eight rebounds.
The Paladins shot 48 percent and made 17-of-22 free throws, but connected on just 6-of-17 triples.
Davidson's 81 points were the most allowed by the Paladins since surrendering 85 points to UNCG in a 93-85 victory at Timmons Arena on February 4, 2012.
Wofford 71, Georgia Southern 53
SPARTANBURG, S.C. - Georgia Southern Men's Basketball fell to 0-3 in SoCon play on Saturday night with a 71-53 loss to Wofford. The Eagles trailed by six at the break and cut the margin to two points a minute into the second half, but a 17-3 Terrier run blew the game open. Next up for the Eagles is a home game against Davidson on Monday night at Hanner Fieldhouse from 7 p.m.
Tre Bussey led the Eagles (6-10, 0-3 SoCon) with 12 points, reaching double-figures for the sixth consecutive game. He was 5-for-10 from the field, but went 0-for-3 from downtown. Freshman Cleon Robters scored nine points for the second-straight game and pulled a pair of steals.
C.J. Reed had eight points with one of the Eagles' two baskets from downtown. GSU finished the game shooting 44 percent from the field. Eric Ferguson logged a career-high five blocks in the game while adding seven rebounds and six points.
Wofford (7-9, 1-2 SoCon) was led by 25 points and eight rebounds from Karl Cochran. The defending SoCon Freshman of the Year was 10-for-26 from the field, coming in off the bench for the Terriers. Lee Skinner added 17 points with 12 rebounds to pace the Terriers on the glass. As a team, Wofford out-rebounded the Eagles 38-26 with a 14-7 edge on the offensive boards.
Wofford led by six points at halftime, but the Eagles accounted for the first four points of the second half to cut the lead to two with 19 minutes left in the game. The Terriers, however, took control over the next seven minutes with a 17-3 run that ballooned the margin out to 16 points. Wofford led by as many as 20 down the stretch en route to the 71-53 victory.
Samford 69, The Citadel 65
CHARLESTON, S.C. - In one of its toughest, most physical games of the 2012-13 season, the Samford University basketball team battled for a 69-65 Southern Conference road victory against The Citadel Bulldogs on Saturday in front of a rowdy crowd at McAlister Fieldhouse.
With Saturday's triumph, Samford (5-12, 3-1 SoCon) earned its first victory at The Citadel (3-11, 0-4 SoCon) in school history. The Bulldogs also swept their Charleston trip against College of Charleston and The Citadel for the first time in school history.
Samford's weekend SoCon sweep was also its first since the Bulldogs defeated Appalachian State and Wofford on the road last season Feb. 2 and 4.
True freshman Clide Geffrard, Jr., scored a game-high 22 points Saturday's and turned in a stellar 7-of-11 shooting performance from the field, including a 2-for-3 outing from 3-point range. Geffrard, Jr., finished just two points shy of his career high of 24 points, but added five rebounds and six free throws.
The Bulldogs' Raijon Kelly and Tim Williams both chipped in with 15 points apiece and combined to shoot 10-of-21 from the floor. Kelly added a team-high seven assists Saturday, while Williams played tough on the low block and finished with a Samford-best six rebounds.
Samford led by as many as 12 points in the first half, 33-21, but The Citadel used a season-high 11 3-point baskets to battle back and take a 39-38 advantage at the 16:55 mark in the second period. During their run, the Cadets received a pair of layups from All-SoCon performer Mike Groselle and a trio of 3-point baskets from Marshall Harris III.
The Citadel's Harris III finished Saturday's game with 12 points and seven rebounds, while Matt Van Scyoc led the Cadets with 19 points and four 3-point baskets. Additionally, The Citadel received 11 key points from P.J. Horgan off the bench.
The teams fought tooth and nail in the second half and there were eight lead changes in Saturday's tough SoCon matchup.
Down the stretch, with 2:48 remaining in the game, The Citadel's Ashton Moore connected on a 3-point basket to trim Samford's lead to 63-62. The Bulldogs then received two huge free throws from Williams, as well as a pair each from both Geffrard, Jr., and Kelly.
Kelly's free throws with 22 seconds remaining iced the game as he gave Samford a decisive 69-63 advantage. The Citadel's Groselle scored a layup at the buzzer to trim the Bulldogs' final victory tally to 69-65.
Samford finished Saturday's road triumph shooting 48.9 percent from the field and 46.2 percent from beyond the arc. The Bulldogs have continued their hot 3-point shooting and finished 6-of-13 from long range.
Sophomore Connor Miller knocked down a pair of key 3-pointers for Samford and registered eight points and four rebounds during a 3-of-7 performance from the field. The Bulldogs also received five points from Will Cook and four points off the bench from Tyler Hood.
Following a physical, hotly-contested first half, the Bulldogs held a 35-31 advantage over The Citadel at the intermission. Samford's Geffrard, Jr., led the team in scoring in the first half with 10 points on 3-of-5 shooting from the field. The Bulldogs' true freshman from Pompano Beach, Fla., also drained both of his 3-point attempts in the opening half.
Fellow true freshman Williams added nine first-half points for Samford, while Kelly and Miller chipped in with seven and five, respectively.