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SoCon Recap: UNCG's Huge Win, Furman's Big Moment

UNCG came up with a huge road win, and the Paladins get their shot on Saturday to make a major statement.

Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

Scores

UNCG 102, The Citadel 95

Wofford 87, ETSU 73

Furman 62, Western Carolina 60

Mercer 73, VMI 58

Standings

Chattanooga 6-1

ETSU 6-2

Furman 6-3

Mercer 5-3

Wofford 5-3

UNCG 4-4

Western Carolina 3-5

Samford 2-6

The Citadel 2-6

VMI 1-7

Game of the Day: Furman 62, Western Carolina 60

The Paladins keep on finding ways to win. With less than five minutes left, the game was tied. It was 61-60 Paladins with 11 seconds left, but Croone missed a free throw, opening the door to the Catamounts getting a chance to tie or take the lead. Mike Brown missed the shot that would have tied it and the Paladins survived at home. They get ETSU on Saturday. A win and the Paladins will be in second all by themselves. The Catamounts are down only one game on UNCG for the final bye, so things are hardly lost. This team is so up and down. They have to go to Wofford on Saturday, a tough task for any team.

Team of the Day: UNCG Spartans

Give the Spartans credit- they went on the road and beat a team in The Citadel that had won two of their last three games. They lead pretty much throughout and outrebounded the Bulldogs by 17. That was the key to the game. The Spartans also shot very well. This win was the Spartans third in four games and they now are in the sixth position in the conference. They can get the final bye for sure. There is no reason to think they could not. Going to Mercer on Saturday is a different story, but this team is streaking.

Player of the Day: Kayel Locke, UNCG

Locke poured in 30 points and collected eight rebounds in the Spartans win on Thursday night. He made 11 of 14 from the floor and 3 of 3 from three point range. Of his eight rebounds, six were offensive. Locke was one of the major differences in this game, as The Citadel just never seemed to be able to control him.

Disappointment of the Day: ETSU's performance at Wofford

The Bucs came up flat against Wofford. Their performance was very disappointing. TJ Cromer scored just seven points and got two rebounds. The Bucs shot just 40% from the floor and 3 of 17 from three point range. They trailed by as many as 21 on multiple occasions. The Bucs were tied for the conference lead heading into the game. They did not end the game that way. The Bucs have to go to Furman on Saturday. That will be a huge game.

Other Notes

--Furman really does have a huge opportunity against ETSU on Saturday. That game will be at 4:00. If the Paladins come up with another huge home win, they will find themselves all alone in second place. If the Bucs win, then they will be in either first or second (depending on the result of the Chattanooga-Samford game). The way the Bucs played on Thursday has to make Furman feel like they have an incredible chance.

--Mercer trailed VMI early, and then came back and won with relative ease. Despite the poor position, the Bears were in good position this weekend, with home games against VMI and a UNCG team that had not a road game until Thursday. The Bears have every opportunity to get a couple of wins this weekend. They got the first.

--Can UNCG get the bye? Absolutely. The home game against Western Carolina next Thursday will go a long way to determining who gets the bye, regardless of the results on Saturday. If the Spartans beat Western Carolina next Thursday, they will find themselves in great position for the bye. A loss doesn't put them in bad shape, but does create more problems moving forward, as they would not own the tiebreaker against the Catamounts anymore.