Koivisto's career night not enough as Chattanooga downs UNCG
CHATTANOOGA, TN – Mikko Koivisto had a career-high 28 points, but it wasn't enough as UNC Greensboro fell to Chattanooga, 84-75, in Southern Conference men's basketball action Saturday night at McKenzie Arena.
Niccheaus Doaks led the way for the Mocs with 21 points,
including 13-of-18 at the free throw line. Stephen McDowell added
20 points and seven assists. Chattanooga raised its record to 14-13
overall, 10-6 in conference play.
Koivisto knocked down 8-of-15 from three-point range. The eight three-pointers was one shy of the school record, while the 15 attempts broke the UNCG mark of 14 held by Kevin Oleksiak and Scott Hartzell.
Kendall Toney added 15 points for UNCG (4-21, 3-13), including four three-pointers.
The Spartans were in foul trouble just about all night. Pete Brown was the first to foul out – with 11 minutes to play. Brown fouled out in just 11 minutes of action. At that point, the Spartans had been whistled for 24 fouls and the Mocs 11. Elhanan Bone fouled out four minutes later, playing just 10 minutes.
For the night, the Mocs finished 32-for-49 from the free throw line. Chattanooga had as many free throw attempts as UNCG had field goal attempts. The Spartans were 24-of-49 from the floor, including 13-of-27 from three-point range.
In front of a sparse crowd on Valentine's Day night, both teams came out flat. Chattanooga missed 10 of its first 12 shots from the field, while the Spartans missed seven of 11 and already had seven team fouls just eight minutes into the contest. But Mikko Koivisto got it going for UNCG, knocking down back-to-back treys to help UNCG to a 19-13 lead midway through the first half.
Stephen McDowell's first three-pointer of the year against the Spartans – the team that broke his 39-game streak earlier this season – sparked a 7-0 run that knotted the score at 22-22 with six minutes to play. UNCG stretched the lead back out to six before a 9-0 Chattanooga run gave the Mocs their first lead of the night, 32-29, with a little over two minutes left in the half.
The Spartans turned the tables and held the Mocs without a field goal for the rest of the half. Kendall Toney's trey with four seconds left in the half gave UNCG a 35-33 lead heading to the locker room.
UNCG's foul trouble continued in the second half, however, as the Mocs were already in the bonus with 15:43 to play. The Spartans went more than four minutes without a bucket as the Mocs opened up a six-point lead, 49-43, with 12 minutes to play.
The Spartans battled back to tie the game at 55-55 with a 7-2 spurt. Chattanooga answered, however, with a 12-3 run as Bone and Damian Eargle fouled out of the game. The Spartans couldn't get closer than six the rest of the way.
The Spartans return home to face Appalachian State on Thursday night at Fleming Gym. Game time is set for 7 pm.
CHATTANOOGA 84, UNCG 75
UNCG (4-21, 3-13 SoCon)
Mikko Koivisto 9-17 2-2 28; Kendall Toney 5-10 1-5 15; Damian Eargle 4-7 0-1 8; Ben Stywall 2-6 3-3 7; Daniel Oliver 1-2 3-6 6; Elhanan Bone 1-2 1-2 3; DeAngelo Jackson 1-1 1-2 3; Sean Spooner 0-0 2-3 2; Pete Brown 1-1 0-0 2; Montel Smith 0-3 1-2 1; Mike Hardiman 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 24-49 14-26 75.
CHATTANOOGA (14-13, 10-6 SCon)
Nicchaeus Doaks 4-8 13-18 21; Stephen McDowell 7-13 2-5 20; Kevin Goffney 3-11 10-12 17; Khalil Hartwell 4-5 1-4 9; Keyron Sheard 2-6 3-4 8; Jasper Williams 1-2 1-2 4; Ricky Taylor 1-3 0-0 3; Dante Harvey 0-1 1-2 1; Ty Patterson 0-3 1-2 1; Jeremy Saffore 0-0 0-0 0; Zach Ferrell 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 22-53 32-49 84.
Halftime: UNCG 35-33. 3-point goals--UNCG 13-27 (Mikko Koivisto 8-15; Kendall Toney 4-8; Daniel Oliver 1-2; Montel Smith 0-2), Chattanooga 8-23 (Stephen McDowell 4-10; Kevin Goffney 1-3; Ricky Taylor 1-2; Jasper Williams 1-1; Keyron Sheard 1-4; Ty Patterson 0-2; Nicchaeus Doaks 0-1). Fouled out--UNCG-Pete Brown; Mikko Koivisto; Damian Eargle; Elhanan Bone, Chattanooga-None. Rebounds--UNCG 27 (Kendall Toney 6), Chattanooga 47 (Kevin Goffney 16). Assists--UNCG 16 (Montel Smith 4), Chattanooga 16 (Stephen McDowell 7). Total fouls—UNCG 37, Chattanooga 19. Technical fouls--UNCG-None, Chattanooga-None. A-3301
FREE THROWS: The final count on fouls wound up 37 against UNCG and 19 against Chattanooga, although the final few fouls against the Spartans were to stop the clock... At halftime, the Spartans had five players with two or more fouls, including four frontcourt players. But the Mocs were just 9-of-17 from the stripe in the first half... The Mocs began the game 4-of-20 from the floor, but hit six of their last nine going into halftime... In his postgame press conference afterwards, Chattanooga coach John Shulman was asked about Koivisto's performance. "I told my guys he was going to miss one eventually. I lied. He was hitting them from 26, 27 feet. You can't change defenses and stop that."... Koivisto moved up to 21st place on the UNCG career scoring list with 890 points, passing Esker Tatum... Chattanooga had a 47-27 advantage on the glass, including 18 offensive rebounds.
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