Greensboro Continues to Be Tough Place For Mocs to Get a Win as They Fall 73-61 to Spartans

(gomocs.com) GREENSBORO, N.C. – The Chattanooga Mocs men’s basketball team wrapped up its four-game road trip with a 73-61 defeat against UNCG in Southern Conference action on Wednesday night inside the Greensboro Coliseum in Greensboro, N.C.  

Following the loss, Chattanooga drops to 9-7 overall and 1-2 inside SoCon play. UNCG improves to a similar 9-7 overall mark while staying perfect in league action at 3-0.   

UTC is now just 1-6 in its last seven games at UNCG after snapping a five-game skid a season ago. The Mocs, the nation’s leader in three-pointers made entering the contest, were held to just a 24.2% (8-of-33) mark from deep and finished the game just 36.8% (21-of-57) from the floor in total.  

“Credit to UNCG tonight, I thought they were the tougher team tonight. They just kind of physically, both offensively and defensively, really took it to us. I think we let missing shots affect us on both sides of the ball,” said head coach Dan Earl.  

“It starts off with not digging a big hole and then again, credit to UNCG. Every time we threw a punch in the second half, they came back and threw one at us. We just couldn’t make plays in-a-row.”  

Jamal Johnson led the team in scoring for the fourth-straight game after finishing with 19 points on 7-of-16 shooting (5-of-11 3PT) and added in six rebounds. Jake Stephens flirted with a triple double after posting 17 points, 13 rebounds and seven assists in the defeat.

HOW IT HAPPENED

Chattanooga saw Stephens and Johnson connect on a couple early threes while UNCG held a 10-8 lead at the first media timeout (15:23). The Spartans continued to hold a one possession lead over the next few minutes, 18-15 (10:07).  

The Mocs earned their first lead of the game, 22-21 (7:41), after a successful Jamaal Walker and-one opportunity. UNCG quickly responded with an 8-0 run on the help of a five-point possession (3PT FG + off ball foul) to take a 29-22 edge with 6:35 left in the half.  

The hosts saw their largest lead of the game at nine, 33-24 (3:31), before back-to-back threes from the guests cut it back to three, 33-30 (2:20). UNCG would grab a 37-30 lead at the break to give UTC its first halftime deficit since December 3 (Gardner-Webb), a span of seven games.  

After an opening basket from UNCG to start the second, UTC scored eight-straight on the help of a pair of threes to cut the deficit to one, 39-38 (15:16). The Spartans answered with an 11-3 run to tie its largest lead of the game at the time, 50-41 (11:36), and force the Mocs into a timeout.  

Demetrius Davis stopped the run with a three in the corner before back-to-back UTC turnovers helped spark seven-straight UNCG points to give the home team a 57-44 (10:08) advantage. Chattanooga scored six of the next seven points to pull back within eight, 58-50 (7:46).  

With UNCG leading 61-52 (6:50), UTC suffered from a nearly three-minute scoreless drought as the Spartans continued to maintain its spread. UNCG would go on to eventually close out the 73-61 victory to start SoCon play a perfect 3-0.

RECORDS/SERIES – Chattanooga 9-7, 1-2 SoCon · UNCG 9-7, 3-0 SoCon · Series: Chattanooga now leads the series 27-26.NOTES TO KNOW– Chattanooga trailed 37-30 at halftime… the first deficit at the break since a 39-38 tally at Gardner-Webb on December 3… span of seven games… UTC was limited to a 29.4% (5-of-17) mark from deep in the half… 38.5% (10-of-26) from the floor in total.  

– UTC finished the game with just one block… lowest block total of the season… just the third time all season finishing with less blocks than its opponent… now 0-3 in games when out-blocked.

  – Jamal Johnson connected on his 200th career three-pointer with his first of the game… it was his 40th with UTC… finished the game with 19 points… ended 5-of-11 from three… eighth-straight game with three or more threes.

 

QUOTESCoach Dan Earl on what was the difference.

“The turnovers were a big thing, and they do some interesting things defensively. We actually threw the ball over the top and got some good looks, we just didn’t make those shots. I thought we made poor decisions when we got the ball downhill. Defensively, they drive against ball screens and they were able to get in the middle of the paint way too often.”

NEXT UP – vs. VMI – Saturday, Jan. 7 – 2:00 p.m. ET – McKenzie Arena – ESPN+

Categories: Sports – Local Sports News, Sports – UTC Mocs