Mocs handle business in final non-conference game
The Chattanooga Mocs used a stingy defensive effort cruising to a 72-42 win over Cumberland in the last game of 2019. It was also the last non-conference contest with the Mocs moving to 9-5 on the year. It’s just the fifth time in the program’s illustrious history winning nine or more games before the New Year.
It was a game showcasing the team’s depth. All 13 student-athletes available exceeded 10 minutes of court time.
“Overall I felt good,” Coach Lamont Paris began. “I felt good that everybody got to play, and some played a lot of minutes. Some of those guys work hard during practice and we have a couple that are on the bubble of doing these things, other times they don't do these things, so they don't get as much opportunity in games to show if they can do it or not.
“Today was some good evidence, and some bad evidence, on if they're able to do things in the game."
A trio of Mocs reach double figures led by Ramon Vila’s 12 points and eight rebounds. David Jean-Baptiste added 11 points and five boards, while Matt Ryan checked in with 10. Aaron Ridley’s 13 points led the Phoenix.
Chattanooga pulled away midway through the first half. Jonathan Scott’s three sparked a 17-6 spurt over the final 9:45 of the first half to take a 40-21 lead into the break.
Vila’s work in the paint took the lead to 21, 48-27, at 14:12. It reached 30 less than five minutes later as Scott’s emphatic slam made it a 59-29 game. Prosper Obidiebube provided the largest lead of 31, 62-31, with a layup off a nice feed from Trey Doomes with 8:52 remaining.
"Our goal was to take care of business and be mature,” Vila shared. “These are games that can be close at half, and coach talked to us about that. He said we had to start strong. We took care of business early and allowed some players who don't play as much to get some minutes to demonstrate what they can do and that they're here for a reason."
It’s back to the road to open the 2020 portion of the slate returning to Southern Conference play at Mercer on Jan. 4. The Mocs are back in the Roundhouse for a 3-game home stand following the trip to Mercer hosting Furman (Jan. 8), Samford (Jan. 11) and Wofford (Jan. 15).