Bucs make it two in a row, drop Western Carolina, 92-83
Freshman Andrew Reed matched his career high with 16 points.
Freshman Andrew Reed matched his career high with 16 points.

Monday, February 14, 2005

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Feb. 14, 2005) - Thanks to a career high 23 points from junior Ben Rhoda (Dayton, Ohio) and a double-double from junior forward Dillion Sneed (Chicago), the East Tennessee State men's basketball team picked up its second straight win with a 92-83 victory over Western Carolina Monday night in front of 4,364 fans at Memorial Center.

 

With the win, the Buccaneers improved to 8-16 overall, 4-10 in Southern Conference play, while Western Carolina dropped to 8-18, 3-10.

 

"It was great for us to get off to a good start," said ETSU head coach Murry Bartow. "They made a run there on us late in the first half to cut it to eight, but the big key for us in the second half was that Western could never get over that hump. They got to within five or six, but could never get any closer. It's another win and now we've got a little momentum again."

 

The Bucs, who were coming off a 105-78 win over UNC Greensboro on Saturday, scored 64 points in the first half of that win over the Spartans. The same offensive intensity was there from the outset again against the Catamounts, as the Bucs built a lead of as many as 23 points at 43-20 with 5:29 remaining before the intermission.

 

However, the Catamounts - who have now lost 15-straight to the Bucs - clawed back into the contest with a 19-6 run the rest of the way to make it 49-41 at the break.

 

In the second half, Western Carolina continued to pester the Bucs and pulled to within five points twice with just over four minutes to play. In fact, the Catamounts cut the lead to four thanks to a 3-pointer by guard Trey Hopkins with 2:52 left in the game. However, from there, junior guard Tim Smith (Newport News, Va.) connected on a floater, and a steal by sophomore guard Travis Strong led to an easy layup by senior guard James Anthony (Tampa) to make it 89-81. That would be all the lead the Bucs would need the rest of the way.

 

For Western Carolina, Hopkins finished with a game-high 25 points, and was joined in double figures by Rans Brempong and David Berghoefer, who scored 15 and 14 points, respectively. Brempong finished with a double-double thanks to 11 rebounds.

 

ETSU was led by Rhoda's career-high of 23 points, while Sneed finished with 19 points and 11 rebounds. Smith ended the game with 23, while freshman Andrew Reed matched his career high with 16 points on 6-of-10 shooting from the floor. Rhoda just missed a double-double, grabbing nine rebounds.

 

For the game, ETSU shot 50 percent from the floor and out-rebounded the Catamounts, 46-40. Western Carolina hit on a 42 percent clip from the floor.

 

The Catamounts will return to the Ramsey Center Thursday evening as they host Chattanooga in Cullowhee, N.C., at 7 p.m. Meanwhile, the Bucs will venture out of conference to host former Ohio Valley Conference rival Austin Peay in Memorial Center at 4 p.m. on Saturday.

 

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