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Southern Conference Notebook

December 12, 2003 Conference Notes No Comments



Southern Conference Notebook

by Robby Trail

Southern Conference teams must start winning non-conference games if they want to gain any respect. Last week as a conference, the teams went 7-7 in non-conference games. This isn’t bad by itself for a mid-major conference, but when you realize that most of those 14 games, with the exception of a few, were against teams that should have been defeated relatively easily, then you can see the problem. In fact, most of these games were against small private colleges with a few NAIA schools thrown in.

However, there are a few bright spots. Kevin Martin continues his brilliant play and may be on his way to All-American consideration. Appalachian State is the biggest surprise of the conference and is now 4-4 overall with two strong non-conference wins on their resume. And, Elon has won three straight after losing their first three games.

North Division

Appalachian State Mountaineers (4-4, 1-0)

Last week: Defeated George Washington 80-77, Defeated Piedmont College 92-36
This week: Saturday against UNC-Charlotte

After a 1-4 start, the Mountaineers have won three straight to get back to .500. Forward Chris McFarland scored 28 points in the rematch with George Washington and 11 against Piedmont and is now the leading scorer for Appalachian State, averaging 12.5 points per game. Guard Noah Brown continues to average double figures for the Mountaineers, putting up just over 10 points per game.

Chattanooga Mocs (4-1)

Last week: No games
This Week: Thursday against Liberty, Saturday against King College

The Mocs, who have won four straight games, will play Liberty Thursday night in their first game in 10 days. The Mocs have two tests, Liberty and King College, before they travel to Alabama on Tuesday.

ETSU Buccaneers (5-1, 1-0)

Last Week: Defeated UNC-Asheville 78-56, Defeated Georgia Southern 91-85
This week: Monday against Clemson

The real Zakee Wadood finally showed up in the Bucs conference opening 91-85 win over Georgia Southern. Wadood, the consensus pre-season conference player of the year, scored a career-high 30 points and grabbed 12 boards to pace ETSU to the victory. For his performance over the course of last week (26.5 ppg and 10 rpg), Wadood was named SoCon player of the week.

UNC-Greensboro Spartans (5-2, 1-0)

Last Week: Defeated Furman 73-65, Lost to American 65-45, Defeated Campbell 79-61
This Week: Saturday against High Point

In their conference-opening win against Furman, forward Ronnie Burrell led the Spartans with 15 points and seven boards. UNCG as a team had 10 steals and forced 14 Furman turnovers in the game. On the season, guard Jay Joseph leads the team in scoring with 17.3 points per game.

Western Carolina Catamounts (2-3)

Last Week: Lost to High Point 66-64, Defeated UNC-Asheville 81-70
This Week: Monday against Wofford

I know I’ve said a lot about forward Kevin Martin, but he continues to be the story for the Catamounts. In their first five games, Martin is averaging a cool 27 points per game while grabbing 5.4 rebounds per game as well. He has shot 49 percent from the field and 46 percent from beyond the arc on the season. Last season, Martin was constantly in foul trouble, but he has matured since then and has committed only 10 fouls thus far.

Elon Phoenix (3-3)

Last week: Defeated Methodist 83-67, Defeated American 85-82
This week: Saturday against Georgetown

After starting the season 0-3, Elon has picked it up and has now won three straight games. Forward Jackson Atoyebi, the only player averaging double figures, continues to lead the Phoenix in scoring with 14.5 points a game. Elon will need to carry all of their momentum into Washington, D.C. if they want to upset Georgetown Saturday.

South Division

Charleston Cougars (4-1, 1-0)

Last Week: Defeated Coastal Carolina 73-72
This Week: Sunday against Newberry

Charleston avoided a near shocker with a one-point win at Coastal Carolina on Saturday. Forward Thomas Mobley took a charge with six-tenths of a second left that wiped away what would have been the game winning basket for Coastal. The Cougars have four players, guard Stanley Jackson, center Mike Benton, guard Tony Mitchell, and Mobley, averaging double figures in scoring in their first five games.

Georgia Southern Eagles (2-2, 0-1)

Last Week: Lost to Charleston 91-85
This Week: Monday against Wagner

Guard Terry Williams led the Eagles with 18 points in their six-point conference opening loss to Charleston. Forwards Sean Olivier and Frank Bennett as well as guard Elton Nesbitt scored in double figures for the Eagles. Nesbitt continues to lead Georgia Southern in scoring with 17.2 points per game.

Wofford Terriers (2-3)

Last Week: Lost to Texas #9 Texas 103-72
This Week: Saturday against Charleston Southern, Monday against Western Carolina

Wofford turned the ball over 28 times in their 30-point loss at Texas. They made several runs last in the first half and early in the second half, but could never keep the ball on the offensive end consistently. Guard Adrien Boarders leads the team in scoring with 13.8 points per game.

Furman Paladins (3-3, 0-1)

Last week: Lost to UNC-Greensboro 73-65, Defeated Northern Iowa 64-55
This week: Sunday against UNC-Asheville

Forward Maleye Ndoye continues to lead the Paladins in scoring with 17.5 points per game. Also averaging double figures for Furman are forward Quan Prowell and guard Eric Webb.

The Citadel Bulldogs (2-5, 0-1)

Last week: Lost to South Carolina 70-40, Lost to Emmanuel College 71-66 (OT), Lost to South Carolina State 65-51
This Week: no games

It was not a good week to be a Bulldog. After being trounced by SEC school South Carolina, The Citadel was beaten in overtime by NAIA school Emmanuel before losing handily to South Carolina State. And, if the Bulldogs need more bad news, Tennessee is waiting for them for a Dec. 17 showdown in Knoxville.

Davidson Wildcats (2-4, 0-1)

Last week: Defeated Hampton 83-70, Lost to Georgetown 71-53
This week: Thursday against UNC-Charlotte, Saturday against Haverford

Turnovers continue to be the achilles heel of the Wildcats. They committed 26 turnovers in their loss against Georgetown and are averaging nearly 22 turnovers per game. When you take that into consideration, it’s easy to see why Davidson is a disappointing 2-4 on the season.

     

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