Big run spoils UNCG's halftime lead, Spartans fall at Chattanooga
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. - A 21-2 run by Chattanooga to open the second half erased a six-point halftime deficit and lifted the Mocs to a 58-45 win over UNC Greensboro in Southern Conference men's basketball action at McKenzie Arena on Monday night.
The win was the fifth straight for Chattanooga, which moved to 10-6 overall and 2-1 in SoCon play. UNCG dropped to 3-13 overall, 2-3 in league play.
After shooting just 27 percent (7-of-26) in the opening half, the Mocs hit eight of their first 10 from the floor to begin the second half in the decisive run. The Spartans burned three timeouts in the run, which spanned the first seven minutes of the second half, but couldn't cool the home team off. Meanwhile, UNCG couldn't seem to get back on track as it missed 11 of its first 13 to open the second half.
After having six players in double figures in UNCG's 88-78 win over Furman on Saturday, the Spartans didn't have a player in double figures until the final 3:20 of Monday night's game. Brandon Evans finished the night as the only Spartan in double figures with 10 points.
Ben Stywall became the 18th player in school history to record 1,000 career points. He had a tough night shooting from the field, however, going just 2-for-11 from the floor and finishing with seven points and a game-high nine rebounds.
Patterson led Chattanooga with 14 points, including four three-pointers. Ricky Taylor chipped in with 12 points and eight rebounds.
"I don't think we had our legs in the second half tonight, playing our third game in five days," said UNCG coach Mike Dement. "We are in this stretch where we play five games in 10 days and three games in five days within that and those things happen when you have that. We played hard in the first half and really got after it, but we just didn't have our legs on offense in the second half.
"On the other side of things, I thought they looked rusty in the first half, having not played in four or five days," said Dement. "But they definitely came through in the second half and looked much more like the team we saw on film."
The Spartans used a 9-4 run, sparked by five straight points by freshman Kyle Randall, to open up a seven-point advantage, 13-6, and force Chattanooga to call a timeout with 10:36 left in the first half. The Mocs missed 11 of their first 13 from the floor to open the game and UNCG, frustrating the Mocs with its switching of defenses, was able to limit Chattanooga to one shot most of the time.
Chattanooga closed the margin to two with a quick 6-0 spurt, capped off by a three-point play by Sam Watson. But UNCG managed to stretch the lead back to six and took a 26-20 lead into the intermission.
Chattanooga scored the first 13 points of the second half including a pair of Ty Patterson three-pointers from the left corner and the left wing to give the Mocs their first lead of the night at 33-26. That began the 21-2 run that extended the lead to 41-28 before a Randall jumper with 12:32 left.
But the Spartans couldn't get back to within single digits the rest of the way, shooting just 7-of-32 from the floor in the second half and finishing at just 26 percent from the field for the game.
UNCG continues its three-game road swing Thursday when it visits Western Carolina for a 7 p.m. start.
CHATTANOOGA 58, UNCG 45
UNCG (3-14, 2-2 SoCon)
Brandon Evans 3-10 3-3 10; Kyle Randall 4-9 0-0 9; Ben Stywall 2-11 3-4 7; Pete Brown 3-7 0-0 6; Kendall Toney 2-11 0-0 6; Mikko Koivisto 2-8 0-0 5; Brian Cole 1-8 0-0 2; Montel Smith 0-0 0-0 0; Elhanan Bone 0-0 0-0 0; Darrius Sellers 0-0 0-0 0; Korey Van Dussen 0-2 0-0 0. Totals 17-66 6-7 45.
CHATTANOOGA (10-6, 2-1 SoCon)
Ty Patterson 5-9 0-0 14; Ricky Taylor 3-9 4-6 12; Chris Early 4-4 0-0 10; Deantre Jefferson 3-3 1-2 7; Jeremy Saffore 2-3 2-4 6; Keegan Bell 2-9 0-0= 4; Sam Watson 1-3 1-1 3; Josh Odem 0-2 2-2 2; Ridge Mckeither 0-2 0-0 0; Jeff Smith 0-2 0-0 0; Jasper Williams 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 20-47 10-15 58.
Halftime: UNCG 26-20. 3-point goals--UNCG 5-25 (Kendall Toney 2-11; Kyle Randall 1-2; Mikko Koivisto 1-6; Brandon Evans 1-3; Korey Van Dussen 0-2; Ben Stywall 0-1), Chattanooga 8-23 (Ty Patterson 4-7; Chris Early 2-2; Ricky Taylor 2-6; Keegan Bell 0-5; Josh Odem 0-1; Jasper Williams 0-1; Jeff Smith 0-1). Fouled out--UNCG-None, Chattanooga-None. Rebounds--UNCG 43 (Ben Stywall 9), Chattanooga 37 (Ricky Taylor 8). Assists--UNCG 6 (Kyle Randall 2; Ben Stywall 2), Chattanooga 13 (Ricky Taylor 3; Keegan Bell 3). Total fouls--UNCG 14, Chattanooga 12. Technical fouls--UNCG-None,
FREE THROWS: Talking about quirky schedules - on Monday night, Chattanooga was playing just its fourth game since December 21. The Spartans were playing their seventh. Chattanooga had four days to prepare for the Spartans, while UNCG was playing its third game in five days. Part of that, however, is because the Chattanooga-Samford road swing had to get broken up for UNCG because the Mocs were in final exams when the original schedule came out... Stywall, the active leader in free throws in the Southern Conference knocked down a pair from the stripe at the 17:08 mark to surpass the 1,000-point for his career... Chattanooga has won four of the last five meetings. The Mocs have also won eight of the last nine against UNCG at McKenzie... UNCG's 45 points were its fewest in a conference game during the Division I era and the fewest in a league game overall since a 44-42 win over North Carolina Wesleyan in a Dixie Conference game back on January 12, 1984. UNCG scored 47 two seasons ago in a 47-44 win at The Citadel.
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