College Corner 1/12
Wofford 1-3 in SOCON; preparing for Samford
It has not been a very strong start to SoCon play for the Terriers, particularly over the last week. Wofford went 1-2 over the last 3 games and are now 1-3 in conference after losses to Chattanooga and UNC-Greensboro over the last week.
Against Chattanooga last Wednesday, the Terriers got off to a rocky start without Isaiah Bigelow, going down 20-10 over the first 3 minutes of the game. They managed to tighten up defensively, forcing a few turnovers and holding the Mocs scoreless for around 7:00. This led to a 15-2 Terrier run to take a 25-22 lead before Chattanooga went on a 10-5 run to reclaim the lead 32-30 at the half.
With 10:00 left in the game, Chattanooga once again found themselves trailing by a possession before going on a run to permanently claim the lead. The Mocs hit 7-12 from three point range in the 2nd half while the Terriers turned the ball over 15 times. The bright spots were Max Klesmit, who returned to the court with a big game, with 22 points. Sam Godwin had a career high 17 points in the 75-67 loss.
This past Saturday, the Terriers traveled up to Johnson City to take on the East Tennessee State Buccaneers. These 2 teams have enjoyed being nearly even keeled over the last 10 meetings, coming into the matchup having split them 5-5. This game was no exception. Both teams played a tight 2-3 zone defense, limiting inside looks and forcing a lot of bad long shots. Neither shot very confidently from mid range or 3 point range in the first half. Wofford shot 22% from behind the arch and 38.7% from the field. The big difference maker was BJ Mack, who carried the Terriers in the paint most of the game, using his size to get to the rim.
In the 2nd half, both teams stuck with a tight zone on D. But, Wofford shot much more confidently behind the arch to help build up an 11 point advantage up to the under 10 mark. The Terriers would go on to pick up their first conference win 68-57. BJ Mack finished with 22 points, going 10-13 from the field and a perfect 2 for 2 from three point range. Isaiah Bigelow returned to action and contributed with double figures, narrowly missing a double double with 12 points and 9 rebounds off the bench. Max Klesmit also had 12 points in the win.
Last night, Wofford took on UNC-Greensboro on the road. If they only played a half, the Terriers would have won an ugly game 28-18, which was the halftime score. The Terriers shot 37% from the field and just 30% from downtown in the 1st half, but that was enough to hold a 10 point advantage over Greensboro, who was a dismal 7-24 from the floor and 3 of 16 from three point range.
The 2nd half was a different story as the Spartans out scored Wofford 40-26, taking advantage of a bevy of turnovers by the Terriers. On the game, Wofford gave up the rock 19 times, leading to 27 points off turnovers for Greensboro in the sloppy 58-54 loss.
The Terriers were led once again by BJ Mack with 18 points and 7 rebounds. Ryan Larson and Max Klesmit combined for 21 points, 8 rebounds, and an assist.
Wofford now sits at 9-7 on the season (1-3 in the SoCon). The Terriers return to action tomorrow night against the Samford Bulldogs at Jerry Richardson Indoor Stadium and then hit the road to Cullowhee, NC Saturday to take on Western Carolina.
Converse Plays One Game; Sees Others Postponed
After two cancellations the Converse men’s team was only able to play one game last week. But it was one of the best games of the season for the Valkyries. Hosting Chowan on Friday night, the game looked like it wasn’t going to end well for Converse as Chowan hit five of their first six threes to jump out to an early lead. The Valkyries stuck around thanks to a hot start from Freshman post player Earl Burgess (Dorman) who scored the first ten points for Converse. Coach Saunders’ team made a run just before halftime to trim the lead to one at the break.
The Valkyries’ defense stepped up in the second half, especially late in the game and Converse eventually took a 65-62 lead with just over a minute remaining. Chowan then went on a 5-1 scoring run to take a one point lead 67-66. Then with eight seconds remaining Converse had one last chance. Guard Sigurd Lorange drove the basket and hit a circus layup in traffic to give the Valkyries the lead 68-67. The desperation heave from Chowan was no good and Converse escaped with a victory to improve to 5-7 overall, and 4-4 in conference play. Lorange led the team with 20 points and 5 assists, while Burgess finished with a career high 19 points to go along with 3 blocks.
Converse has two conference road games this week as they are at Belmont Abbey on Wednesday, and at Lees-McRae on Saturday afternoon.
Upstate off to 1-0 Start in Big South
USC Upstate started conference play this past weekend with a win in Clinton vs Presbyterian. The Spartans defeated the Blue Hose 82-72 on Saturday.
The Spartans were led by Jordan Gainey with 20 points. Dalvin White and Bryson Mozone each contributed 16 points in the win, while Quentin Hodge added 11.
The Spartans led for a majority of the game and it seemed like everything the score would get close Dalvin White would hit a big three from way outside as the shot clock was winding down.
Upstate shot the ball well, especially in the first half ,shooting over 72% from the field, 85% from three, and 100% from the free-throw line to start the game. The Spartans cooled off some in the second half and ended the game just over 56% from the floor, just shy of 69% from outside and just under 78% from the line.
The Spartans second conference game will be on Wednesday vs Tubby Smith and the High Point Panthers at the Hodge Center, part of a double header that starts at 5:00 with the Upstate Women hosting High Point as well.
PC Starts Conference Play
The Presbyterian College Blue Hose began Conference play with a couple of close losses, falling to NC A&T and USC Upstate last week.
PC got off to a 10-0 lead over the Aggies before falling on the road 65-57. Winston Hill led the way with 19 points.
The Senior Forward missed the game against USC Upstate due to an injury. Meanwhile the Spartans went 11-16 from 3 and defeated PC 82-72.
This week, the Blue Hose have 2 road games…on the road at Gardner Webb Wednesday night at 7pm and at Hampton this Saturday at 5:30pm. Gardner Webb has won 3 straight including a 77-60 win at Georgia and are now 8-7 on the year. Hampton lost to Gardner Webb last Saturday 78-69 in their first Big South game of the year.