Friday, March 8, 2013

SoCon Tournament Central: Day One Review

Georgia Southern 60, Wofford 44- Well, that was an ugly start to the tournament. Karl Cochran and Spencer Collins combined to go 6 for 23 from the floor, 0 for 9 from three point range, and scored 14 points combined. The Terriers offense was terrible. The Eagles shot only slightly better. They shot 37.5% from the floor. The Eagles dominance on the glass was the reason for the win. Wofford just never got going offensively this year, and they were left behind in the end. Georgia Southern is mediocre offensively, but Eric Ferguson showed up. He scored 17 points. If he dominates games, the Eagles could pull off the upset against Davidson tomorrow.

Furman 55, Samford 51- Welcome back, Charlie Reddick and Stephen Croone!  Yes, Croone played against College of Charleston. But with both of those guys back, the Paladins were able to pull off the stunning upset. I mocked the Paladins for much of the week, and they proved me wrong. I'll take my crow with just a little bit of pepper, please. Samford's young team just did not show up in round one. There are better days ahead for this team, as Raijon Kelly and Tim Williams continue to age together. Bobby Austin scored his 17 points, along with Reddick and Croone combining for 19 points and twelve rebounds. Furman could pull off another upset against Appalachian State tomorrow if they play this well. With the extra bodies, this is a very different team than the one that played late in the year and got blown out.

UNCG 87, Chattanooga 81- The Mocs jumped out to an eleven point halftime lead and lead by about that much for about half of the second half. Then Derrell Armstrong took over and the Spartans never looked back. It was the best offensive show of the day, as predicted. The two teams both showed off some of their athletic skill, and it was a close, hard fought game. But in the end, the Spartans played better. They are also helped in the long run by Trevis Simpson's foul trouble, which kept him out for a lot of the run, because now he has fewer minutes on his legs as the Spartans try to proceed through the weekend. The Spartans beat the Mocs for the third time this year.

Western Carolina 76, The Citadel 61- The Catamounts fell behind early 12-5, as the Bulldogs came out and played really well early. But after that, Western Carolina slowly and methodically pulled away to win the game. Trey Sumler was brilliant, scoring 27 points. Tawaski King collected eight rebounds. The Catamounts lived off the energy of the crowd, and will continue to do so as the tournament progresses. They shot almost 51% from the floor. When the Catamounts shoot that well, they are almost impossible to beat.

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