Chattanooga Mocs beat Furman, seal SoCon title

Chattanooga Mocs beat Furman, seal SoCon title

February 16th, 2014 by Gene Henley in Sports - College

UTC Mocs logo

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga women's basketball team earned the Southern Conference regular-season title Saturday with a 71-54 victory over Furman in Greenville, S.C.

The Mocs (22-3, 14-0), who clinched the title outright when Davidson lost to Georgia Southern later in the day, shook off a subpar first half, limiting the Lady Paladins to 33 percent shooting in the final 20 minutes after the hosts were 12-for-21 in the first. Taylor Hall led the Mocs with 19 points, eight rebounds, three assists and three steals.

The win was the Mocs' 18th consecutive and 30th straight in conference play.

The team had balanced scoring, as Ashlen Dewart had 12 points and Alex Black and Jasmine Joyner added 11 each. Dewart also had eight rebounds, while Joyner blocked four shots. She leads the team with 30 blocks despite having played only 149 minutes this season.

UTC gave the Lady Paladins (13-11, 7-6) their first home loss in conference play this season.

"They play hard all the time, but they feel good when they play here," UTC coach Jim Foster said on the postgame radio broadcast. "I thought we did a good job in the second half."

Furman led 9-2, but the Mocs rallied, scoring 11 consecutive points in taking a 19-13 edge. The teams traded leads throughout the rest of the first half, with UTC holding a 31-28 advantage at the break.

The Mocs pulled away late in the second half, finishing the game on a 13-0 run and holding the Lady Paladins scoreless over the final 6:05.

"We finally came together in the second half," Joyner said on the radio broadcast. "We needed energy -- that's what was missing in the first half -- and Coach did a good job of motivating us."

Holli Wilkins led Furman with 15 points, while Sarah Durdaller and Brittany Hodges added 12 apiece.

The Mocs finish their final weekend road trip with a 7 p.m. game Monday at Wofford.