DAYTON, OHIO -- Despite playing without Southern Conference Player of the Year Casey Jones, Chattanooga was able to record its most impressive win of the season, downing Dayton, 61-59, in non-conference action, ending the Flyers' 26-game home game winning streak Saturday night at UD Arena.
It was Greg Pryor that stepped up big down the stretch, and his clutch free throws with 5.2 seconds remaining allowed the Mocs to step away from UD Arena with a great win for the program and for the Southern Conference in the process. The win also meant the Mocs continue to ascend in the minds of mid-major poll voters, as the Mocs now have wins over Georgia, Illinois and Dayton, with the win over the Flyers being the crown jewel of those victories.
Pryor's free throws were part of a night which saw him pace the Mocs with team-high 15 points, which he scored in the game's final 15:32. He was the only Mocs player in double figures, with Duke Etheridge finishing with nine points and six boards off the bench, while Tre' McLean added eight points and eight boards.
The Flyers got a game-high 20 points from forward Kendall Pollard, while Kyle Davis added 10, and Scoochie Smith posted nine points and seven assists.
In what was a closely contested opening half of play, the Mocs held the lead, 29-24, at the half, however, Dayton would come out of the locker room and seemingly assume control of the game, taking a 46-40 lead early in the frame, however, Chattanooga's Eric Robertson answered with a triple to slice the lead in half at the 9:03 mark of the second half.
Eventually Pryor would end up tying the basketball game, 46-46, after connecting on a triple after making a steal at mid-court some 15 seconds after Robertson's original three-pointer.
The Mocs eventually took a 59-55 lead with just over a minute left, however, Dayton wouldn't go away. Dayton's Charles Cooke made a layup, and a pair of 1-of-2 trips to the charity stripe from Cooke and Pollard following Mocs turnovers, allowed Dayton to tie the game, 59-59, with 34.4 second remaining.
From there, Pryor waited for the opportunity, knowing the game was in his hands with Jones sidelined with an ankle injury, and he would calmly swish both foul shots with 5.3 seconds remaining. A last frantic drive down the court by the Flyers' Scoochie Smith would not be enough to tie, as his layup attempt was challenged by Justin Tuoyo and went awry, allowing Chattanooga to escape with one of the wins of the campaign for the Southern Conference.
The win saw the Mocs improve to 7-2 overall and Dayton falls to 7-2. The Mocs return to action Tuesday when the Mocs take on Tennessee Tech at McKenzie Arena in Chattanooga. Dayton has a week off before facing Furman on Saturday, Dec. 19, at UD Arena.