published Wednesday, February 15th, 2012

UTC's Dontay Hampton cleared to play

  • photo
    UTCs Dontay Hampton brings the ball down court in the game against Warren Wilson during a November game at McKenzie Arena.
    Photo by Angela Lewis /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga guard Dontay Hampton still sported stitches above his right eye Tuesday, but he's been cleared to play tonight at Appalachian State.

The junior guard crashed into the floor on a fastbreak attempt in the first half Saturday night against UNC Greensboro and did not return to the game.

"There were concussion-like symptoms," Mocs coach John Shulman said. "I think he saw blood and threw up. And he was light-headed. He's good to go."

South over North

The Southern Conference standings are simple to read: The South Division is stronger than the North.

The North Division has only Elon and UNC Greensboro above .500 in SoCon play. The South has Davidson, Georgia Southern, Wofford and the College of Charleston with more wins than losses so far.

"Davidson has been pretty consistent all year," Western Carolina coach Larry Hunter said. "Hats off to Mike Young with that [Wofford] group. Even Charleston started well.

"They've done a great job over there."

Keeping 'em humble

Samford could be the surprise of the SoCon.

The Bulldogs (10-15) were picked to finish last in the preseason coaches' poll, but they're 7-7 in the SoCon so far. They have more conference victories than all but their inaugural year of 2008-09.

Success is something different that coach Jimmy Tillette has to deal with.

"When we were losing, we had to tell them they were not losers," Tillette said. "The other side of the coin is how well do we handle success? We try not to look in the rearview mirror.

"I'm proud of my kids. They've been able to stay the course after starting horribly."

Capel prefers smaller

Appalachian State coach Jason Capel said he is more comfortable with a smaller lineup on the floor because it is a more attacking lineup than having his big guys clog the lane.

"We want to get the ball in the paint. I want guys to be in attack mode," Capel said. "The small lineup allows us to play faster. It gives us an opportunity to get up and down the court. We can move around and trap and press."

Simpson honored

UNCG sophomore wing Trevis Simpson earned the conference player-of-the-week honor Tuesday. He sank a clutch 3-pointer against the Mocs on Saturday and finished with 24 points. He has scored at least 23 points in the Spartans' last six games, and they've gone 5-1.

about David Uchiyama...

David Uchiyama is a sports writer at the Chattanooga Times Free Press who began his tenure here in May 2001. His primary beats are UTC athletics — specifically men’s basketball and athletic department administration — and golf, which includes coverage from the PGA Tour to youth events. He also covers other high school sports, outdoor adventures, and contributes to other sections of the newspaper when necessary. David grew up in Salinas, Calif., and began working ...

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