College Corner 2/9
Terriers Beat ETSU
The Wofford Terriers found themselves with a lot more time on their hands compared to last week, when they played 3 games in a 5 days span. The Terriers played just one game this past Saturday when they hosted the East Tennessee State Buccaneers at Jerry Richardson Indoor Stadium in front of a TV audience on CBS Sports Network.
In typical fashion throughout this series’ history, this one was tightly-contested and came down to the final buzzer. Wofford came out with their usual approach, with a steady pace, but aggressive shooting. They won the tip and took an early 3-0 lead after Austin Patterson drained a 3. Over the opening 4 minutes of the game, the Terriers were 3 of 5 from behind the arch with makes from Austin Patterson, BJ Mack, and Ryan Larson. But aside from those and a couple of layups from Patterson, Max Klesmit, and Isaiah Bigelow, Wofford really struggled to shoot, not just in the early going of the first half, but on the game as a whole. For a bit of perspective, BJ Mack, who is normally a holy terror when at the rim for opposing defenses, was only 3 for 7 from the floor in the game.
At the half, Wofford trailed by just 4 points – 30-26. They were 5 of 12 from three point range, 0 for 4 from the freethrow line, and a misleading 50% from the field – 5 of 10 (stats can lie if you just look at percentages..). The 2nd half fared much better as far as offense goes for the Terriers. They traded baskets up until after the first media timeout when Wofford trailed 40-38. They went on an 8-0 run out of the timeout, sparked by a 3 from Austin Patterson that gave Wofford a 41-40 lead. By the next timeout, they had built up a 46-40 advantage. But, East Tennessee State wasn’t done yet.
They clawed their way back to tie it after a late 7-2 run capped with back to back dunks. BJ Mack drew a foul on a reach-in on Wofford’s ensuing possession and drained both free throws to put the Terriers back up 62-60 with :17 to play. With just seconds remaining on the clock after their last timeout, the Bucs inbounded it to a man who was open at the top of the arch, but his 3 ball missed off the front iron and Isaiah Bigelow came up with the defensive rebound as time expired for a much needed 62-60 SoCon win for Wofford.
The things that helped the Terriers stay in this game were the pace of play and their defense. Both teams play a similar style of basketball. They are both loaded with guys who can shoot well (when they are on it), and they both swarm to the ball keeping their opposition from being able to drive inside on them. They also take every possible second off the shot clock before making a move. Defensively, Wofford held the Bucs to 6-20 from behind the arch (in the entire game) and to just 40% from the field in the 2nd half. The Terriers also came up with 25 defensive rebounds in the game, limiting the Bucs to just 7 offensive rebounds for 7 second chance points.
All in all, the Terriers were 22-53 from the field, 11-30 from downtown, and 7-10 from the charity stripe. Max Klesmit led the charge with 15 points, including going 3 of 10 from three point range. BJ Mack and Isaiah Bigelow both scored 14 points a piece, combining to go 6 of 11 from the floor and 4 for 6 from behind the arch. Austin Patterson and Ryan Larson were a combined 4 of 9 from downtown with a combined 14 points.
Wofford, now 14-10, 6-6 in conference, will return to action Wednesday night as they hit the road to Birmingham to take on the Samford Bulldogs. Tip off is set for 8:00 PM. They’ll return home Saturday at 7:00 to host Western Carolina.
Spartan Women Win 6th Straight
The Upstate Women’s Basketball Team tied a D-1 school record with their 6th consecutive victory when they knocked off Winthrop on Tuesday night in Rock Hill.
Chellia Watson led the Spartans in scoring with 20 points shooting 8-6 from the field and 4-7 from outside. Terah Harness added 18 points and Jada Logan had ten as the Spartans knocked off the Eagles 73-43.
Upstate (9-2) remains just behind Cambell (11-2) in the overall standings in the Big South Conference. The Spartans have another matchup with Winthrop on Wednesday night at the Hodge Center at 7pm and will take on High Point on Saturday at High Point at 2:00. After this weekend their will be 5 games remaining in the regular season.
The Men’s team suffered a setback against Campbell over the weekend falling to the Camels 80-71 at the Hodge Center on Saturday.
Bryson Mozone had another big game scoring a game-high 23 points in the loss. Jordan Gainey was the only other Spartan in double figures with 14 points in the game.
That loss dropped the Spartans from first place in the South Division. The Spartans (7-3) are now second in the division behind Winthrop (8-2) and tied with Gardner-Webb (7-3).
The Men’s team will travel to Longwood on Thursday to take on the Lancers who are currently undefeated in conference play for a 7:00 that will be on ESPNU. On Saturday they will host Asheville at the Hodge Center for a 4:00 tipoff on ESPN+.
Valkyries’ Slump Continues
Converse dropped all three games over the last week. Falling 81-67 at Mount Olive on Friday, followed by a 74-62 loss at Chowan on Saturday. The Valkyries were back at home on Tuesday, but couldn’t slow down a red hot Belmont Abbey team, as they lost 96-79.
Sophomore guard Sigurd Lorange and Freshman post player Earl Burgess continue to lead the charge for the Valkyries, as Lorange finished with 18 points and 5 assists in the loss to the Crusaders on Tuesday. While Burgess also had 18 points to go along with 9 rebounds.
Converse is now in the midst of a 9 game losing streak, which has dropped their record to 5-16 overall and 4-13 in Conference Carolinas. Coach Ryan Saunders will look to right the ship this weekend with games at Barton College on Friday, and at Francis Marion on Saturday.