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College Corner 1/19

Converse Drops Back to Back Conferences Games

Alex Smith 

The Valkyries dropped a pair of conference road games last week, falling to Belmont Abbey 103-72, and then 81-72 to Lees-McRae. The losses put their record at 5-9 overall, 4-6 in conference play.

In the first game, Belmont Abbey jumped out to a huge first half lead and the Valkyries were never able to recover despite scoring 50 second half points. Sigurd Lorange led the team with 23 points.

The Valkyries were much more competitive against Lees-McRae as it was a four point game with just over four minutes to play. However the Bobcats were able to hold on by making their free throws down the stretch. Lorange had another stellar game with a team high 18 points and 8 assists. He was one of five players in double figures for Converse.

The Valkyries will look to bounce back this week with a pair of home games as they take on UNC-Pembroke on Friday and Francis Marion on Saturday.

Terriers Win Pair of Conference Games

Jordan Ferrell 

After a tough 1-3 start in Southern Conference play, Wofford went a much-needed 2-0 this week to even up their conference record at 3-3 and move them up to 4th in the standings behind Chattanooga, Mercer, and Furman.

This past Wednesday, the Terriers took on the Samford Bulldogs short Head Coach Jay McAuley, who was under covid-19 protocols. Assistant Head Coach Dwight Perry would assume the helm for him. Wofford put together one of their best team performances all season so far, knocking off Samford 87-64 at Jerry Richardson Indoor Stadium. Every player that saw significant minutes scored, and the Terriers shot 62.3% from the field.

The Terriers had 4 in double figures, continuing the trend of BJ Mack leading the team. Mack logged 18 points, while Max Klesmit scored 16. Morgan Safford and Isaiah Bigelow combined for 20 (10 points each). Ryan Larson and Luke Turner just missed double figures with 9 points a piece.

Wofford followed up the dominant outing at home with an even more dominant performance on the road this past Saturday at Western Carolina. The Terriers opened the game on a 17-3 run that covered a span of nearly 7:00. The Catamounts clawed their way back in, but could only pull as close as 9. In essence, the Terriers jumped on them early and never had to worry about looking back, dealing WCU an 84-64 beat down.

The trends continued in the lopsided affair for Wofford as once again they had 4 players post double figures and were once again led by none other than BJ Mack, who had 22 points and just missed a double double with 9 rebounds.

The biggest story was freshman forward Luke Turner, who logged a double double with a career high 20 points and 10 rebounds. Bigelow and Larson combined for 30 points, 11 rebounds, and 9 assists. All in all, the Terriers shot 53.4% from the floor with 21 assists as a team.

With their SoCon record now at .500, Wofford will take to the floor again this Wednesday night at Richardson Indoor Stadium for a tilt with the Citadel with a good shot at going over .500 in conference. They’ll follow that with the big rivalry showdown Saturday at home with the Furman Paladins. Both games will tip off at 7:00 PM. 

USC Upstate Has Three-Game Big South Win Streak

Tyler Shugart

The Spartans have been playing goos basketball since the start of Big South play earlier this month.  After a tough loss to Radford to open Big South Play the Spartans have won three conference games in a row. 

Upstate beat Presbyterian on the 8th and followed that up with a win over High Point on a last second shot by Dalvin White to earn a 65-66 victory over Tubby Smith and the Panthers.  The Spartans later in the week beat UNC Asheville 76-73 behind a 22 point effort from freshman guard Jordan Gainey and 16 points from senior Bryson Mozone. 

The 3-1 start to conference play has Upstate tied for second in the league behind undefeated Winthrop and Longwood.  NC A&T and Gardner Webb also have 3-1 records in Big South play.  

This week Upstate will face Gardner-Webb on Wednesday at 7:00 in Boiling Springs, NC before retiring home on Saturday to face Charleston Southern.  

The Spartans will be without head coach Dave Dickerson on Wednesday as he is in Covid protocols following a positive test.  He expects to rejoin the team on Saturday at home vs Charleston Southern.  

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