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Staff file photo by Troy Stolt / Malachi Smith totaled 24 points, five rebounds and three assists to help lead UTC to a SoCon win Wednesday night at Wofford.

A shorthanded University of Tennessee at Chattanooga men's basketball team picked up a big 75-67 road win Wednesday night, beating Wofford in a Southern Conference matchup at Jerry Richardson Indoor Stadium.

The Mocs (12-3, 2-0) played without starting center Silvio De Sousa, reserve forward Jamaal Walker and guard Ashton Smith, who did not make the trip to Spartanburg, South Carolina. UTC's postgame release noted the three were unavailable but cited federal privacy regulations in not giving reasons for their absence.

Malachi Smith led the Mocs in points (24) and rebounds (five) and also had three assists, while David Jean-Baptiste added 17 points. Jean-Baptiste was 5-for-9 from 3-point range and became UTC's all-time leader in 3s with 1:14 to play in the first half, passing Stephen McDowell, who made 243 during his career.

Darius Banks chipped in 12 points and matched Jean-Baptiste with a team-high four assists.

The Mocs built a 20-11 lead, but Wofford (8-6, 0-2) answered with a 19-3 run to build a seven-point advantage late in the first half. The Mocs responded with the final nine points of the period and the first five after the break, and while the Terriers kept it close throughout, they were never able to retake the lead as UTC answered with big shot after big shot down the stretch.

"Man, that was a big-time, gritty performance from the guys," UTC coach Lamont Paris said. "They responded to a lot of different things, and we had two or three stretches defensively that I thought changed the complexion of what was happening out there.

"Wofford has a scrappy, competitive team. Someone asked me one time how Wofford is competitive every year, and it's because they have veterans every single year. They've got a good team and they played really hard and wanted to win, but we did a lot of good things. Road wins are hard to come by, so we'll take it."

The Mocs host The Citadel (6-6, 0-1) at 4 p.m. Saturday at McKenzie Arena.

Compiled by Gene Henley. Contact him at ghenley@timesfreepress.com.

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