UNCG 65, Appalachian State 55
ASHEVILLE, N.C. --- Trevis Simpson had 17 points and nine rebounds to lead UNCG past Appalachian State 65-55 Saturday afternoon at the U.S. Cellular Center. Simpson and his squad had to overcome an 11-point deficit in the second half to advance to the semifinals of the Southern Conference Basketball Championship.
Nathan Healy's layup at 12:57 gave App State a 49-38 lead. From there the Spartans went on a 13-2 run to tie the game at 51-all on David Williams' layup at 8:16.
ASU re-took the lead on two Jamaal Trice free throws just 30 seconds later, but would score just two points the rest of the way. Drew Parker's three-pointer at 5:25 put UNCG up for good, 56-53. The Spartans closed the game out-scoring the Mountaineers 14-2 after Trice's free tosses,
Williams had 12 points and nine rebounds for the Spartans. Derrell Armstrong came off the bench to add 11 points, six rebounds and three assists.
Isaac Butts led Appalachian with 16 points and 10 rebounds. Trice scored 11 in a reserve role, while Omar Carter chipped in 10.
The Spartans had a 44-36 advantage on the boards. They grabbed 17 offensive boards , including 10 in the second half helping key the comeback.
It was a tale of two halves for the Mountaineers. They took a 39-32 lead into halftime shooting 51.7 percent (15-29) from the floor. ASU tallied just 16 in the second half shooting 20.7 percent (6-29). Its last field goal came with 9:03 left in the game missing its final 12 shots.
Western Carolina 82, Wofford 59
ASHEVILLE, N.C. --- North Division No. 3 Western Carolina breezed past South No. 2 Wofford 82-59 Saturday afternoon in the U.S. Cellular Center. It was a total team effort as six Catamounts scored in double figures.
Harouna Mutombo led the way with 17 points and eight rebounds. Tawaski King added 14 points and 10 boards, while Trey Sumler chipped in 12 points, nine rebounds and five assists.
Brad Loesing tallied 23 points and five assists for the Terriers. Lee Skinner had 12 points and eight rebounds as well.
Western immediately built on its six-point halftime lead with an 11-2 run to take a 15-point advantage, 49-34, on King's layup at 16:20. Wofford never got closer than 11 from that point on.
The lead was 12, 71-59, before the Catamounts closed the contest with 12 unanswered points. Back-to-back three-pointers from Mutombo and Keaton Cole, along with tenacious defense, put the exclamation point on the win. Western did not allow a Wofford field goal over the final 6:58.
Cole had 16 points on a sharp shooting day hitting five-of-seven from the floor including two-for-three from beyond the arc. Brandon Boggs and Preston Ross each had 11. WCU shot 55.8 percent (29-52) from the field and 50 percent (7-14) from three-point range as a team.
As hot as the Catamounts shot it, the Terriers were cold. Wofford managed just 32.8 percent shooting (20-61) making just three of 24 three-point efforts (12.5%).
The Catamounts and Spartans will square off Sunday at 6:00 p.m. in the first semifinal. The game can be seen on the SoCon Sports Network and will be shown on ESPN3.