CULLOWHEE, N.C. — Fresh thoughts and observations from the Mocs' 83-81 overtime win at Western Carolina.
First, the Mocs earned a first-round bye to the SoCon tournament. That's quite an accomplishment considering they were picked seventh in preseason polls.
Now they've avoided Davidson until the potential championship game, and UTC's first game next Saturday will be against a team that played the night before.
That's an even bigger accomplishment.
UTC looked like it was going to lose at the end of regulation when Gee McGhee missed two free throws that would have given the Mocs the lead. But Martynas Bareika came through with a 3-pointer from the left wing to tie the game.
Don't forget about Casey Jones locking down WCU senior Trey Sumler on the last play of regulation.
They were dead again when the Mocs were down four with 22 ticks in overtime. Then Ronrico White hit a deep 3-pointer at the top of the key.
The Mocs pressed in the full court and were able to tie up Tom Tankelewicz -- I think it was Lance Stokes and McGhee who got their hands on the ball.
Jones hit a jumper on a play called for him putting UTC ahead 82-81.
And there were other big plays that were washed out by the highlights.
• UTC shot 8-of-16 from the 3-point line and 29-38 (76.3 percent) from the free-throw line.
• WCU hoisted 27-pointers and made 12. And no, coach Will Wade did not call for "Fire!"
• T.J. Williams played eight minutes. That's eight minutes of rest for Z. Mason.
I took a picture of the Ocoee on the way over today. I don't think taking one on the drive home would turn out as well. You can see it at www.Twitter.com/UchiyamaCTFP
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 ...