GREENSBORO, N.C. – The UNCG men's basketball hits the road for a pair of games this week against Southern Conference North Division foes beginning Thursday night when the Spartans travel to Chattanooga. Game time is set for 7 p.m. at McKenzie Arena and will be broadcast on 1320 WCOG AM and online at www.uncgspartans.com.
Thursday's game marks the 32nd meeting all-time between UNCG and Chattanooga dating back to Jan. 6, 1992. The Spartans trail the all-time series by a 13-18 margin, but have won three straight in the series. Last season, UNCG posted a season series sweep of the Mocs with an 81-72 victory at home and a 77-76 victory in McKenzie Arena last year.
Earlier this season, the Spartans posted a 77-69 victory over the Mocs at the Greensboro Coliseum. Junior guard Trevis Simpson (Douglas, Ga./Coffee) was the offensive catalyst as he scored a career-high 41 points, including 27 in the first half to set the UNCG Division-I single game scoring record. Simpson connected on 14-of-25 from the field and tied his career-high with seven three-pointers.
Chattanooga rallied from a 10-point halftime deficit earlier this year and narrowed the UNCG lead to two points with 2:14 left in the game, but the Spartans out-scored the Mocs 10-2 down the stretch to secure the victory. Junior David Williams (Jacksonville, Fla./First Coast) scored one of the game's biggest baskets after Chattanooga trimmed the lead to two, while also posting back-to-back steals in the final minute which led to fast break baskets by Simpson.
Chattanooga was led by forward Z. Mason who posted a double-double of 18 points and 11 rebounds on 6-of-15 shooting. Ronrico White added 15 points while Gee McGhee tallied 12 points and six assists.
UNCG enters Thursday's game with a 7-18 overall record and a 5-9 mark in SoCon play. The Spartans have dropped three straight and five out of their last six games. UNCG is averaging 71.3 points per game while allowing 73.9 points per game.
Simpson leads the team and the SoCon in scoring at 19.4 points per game, which ranks 15th in NCAA Division I. He has scored in double figures 21 times this season and leads the team with 51 three-pointers. Senior guard Derrell Armstrong (Mechanicsville, Md./Allegany CC) is second on the team and sixth in the SoCon in scoring at 19.4 points per game. Armstrong is coming off of a 20-point effort Sunday afternoon in the loss to Appalachian State as he was 7-of-18 from the field.
Chattanooga enters Thursday's game with an 11-16 and a 6-8 mark in SoCon play. The Mocs have won three out of their last five with wins over The Citadel, Samford and Furman while dropping games to the College of Charleston and Wofford. Chattanooga is 8-8 this season in games played at home, including a 4-3 record in home league games.
Mason leads the team in scoring at 14.5 points per game and on the glass grabbing 7.3 rebounds per game. He is shooting 48.2 percent (144-of-299) from the field and 71.1 percent (81-of-114) from the free throw line. McGhee is second on the team in scoring at 11.9 points per game while leading the team with 34 three-pointers and handing out 66 assists.
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