CHATTANOOGA ( Jones' game-high 19 points led four Chattanooga Mocs in double figures in a 77-65 win over visiting Western Carolina Saturday evening. It was needed to hold off the hot-shooting Catamounts.
Western took a 44-42 lead on Devin Peterson's jumper with just over 14 minutes remaining in the contest. The Mocs answered with a 10-2 run to flip the advantage to 52-46 for the Gig City lads after Justin Tuoyo's layup on a nice Jones feed. Chattanooga's defense limited the Cats to one field goal over four-plus minutes to take control.
Jones' three-pointer just three minutes later extended the margin to 10, 62-52, with 6:40 to go. The Cats could get no closer than seven the rest of the way.
Tuoyo added 15 points topping the 1,000-point plateau for his UTC career. Johnathan Burroughs-Cook and Tre' McLean each scored 12. The squad had 14 steals led by Greg Pryor and McLean with four apiece.
Western shot 55.6 percent (25-45) from the field including 50.0 percent (5-10) from 3pt range. Both numbers ranked second on the season against DI opposition. Haboubacar Mutombo led the way with 17 points and a game-high eight rebounds. Kyle Rhoades had 13 off the bench, while Peterson netted 12. Onno Steger contributed 10.
The Mocs led by as many as 13 in opening 20. It was a 10-point advantage, 30-20, on two Jones free throws at 4:51. Maurice Smith capped an 11-3 run with a layup with less than 30 seconds until intermission. Rodney Chatman hit two from the line to send the home team into the break up 35-31.
Chattanooga – 17-6, 8-3 in the SoCon. Western Carolina – 7-18, 2-10 in league play.
The Mocs held a 20-4 advantage in points off turnovers. The 16-point differential is second only to the +25 (29-4) vs. ULM earlier this season. Click the stats link above for a complete look at today's statistics.
"We feel like, if we stay connected and we keep playing hard, [the opposition's] going to break down before us. That's what got us a win tonight. Just keep playing hard and keep pounding the rock. Tonight, we got two really good plays that just sparked some energy in us and helped us pull it out." – Senior Casey Jones. For more thoughts from coach and student-athletes, click the quotes link above.
Tuoyo became the 23rd Moc of the DI era to score 1,000 points joining teammates Casey Jones (1,254) and Greg Pryor (1,147). For further breakdown on stats and facts from today's game, click notes link above.