Jan. 17, 2012
Cullowhee, N.C. - Trey Sumler led nine Catamounts in double figures with a game-high 18 points Tuesday night as Western Carolina set a school single-game scoring record, cruising past the Toccoa Falls Eagles, 141-39, in the Ramsey Center. WCU scored the first 18 points of the game and led wire-to-wire en route to snapping a two-game slide.
In addition to breaking the single-game scoring record by eight points (141 over 133), Tuesday night's margin of victory (102) and points scored in the 72-17 first half were also records for the Catamounts. The 102-point win additionally ranks as the third-largest margin of victory in NCAA history.
Of the nine Catamounts in double figures, a combined six set career-highs in scoring in the victory.
"I thought we had a good mindset coming into tonight's game," said WCU head coach Larry Hunter during post-game comments on the Catamount Sports Network. "I just thought we played hard."
Sumler finished 6-of-9 from the floor including a pair of 3-pointers and six assists in addition to his game-high point total. True freshman guard James Sinclair recorded his first career double-double with career bests of 16 points and 13 rebounds, adding five assists and three steals in the winning effort. The Savannah, Ga., native pulled down 10 defensive boards and blocked three shots for WCU.
"James (Sinclair) has a lot of potential," said Hunter. "He has had a few really good practices and will play significant minutes down the stretch for us. He is really getting better."
Seniors Keaton Cole and Sam Smithson both scored 14 in the win with Cole draining four 3-pointers to give him 145 in his WCU career, moving him into ninth on the school's career charts. Smithson just missed a double-double, adding a career-best nine rebounds including six offensive boards. Ishmael Hollis tallied 13 points off the bench while Tom Tankelewicz chipped in 11 including a perfect 6-for-6 from the free throw line.
Sophomores Tawaski King (5-of-7), Preston Ross (4-of-4) and freshman Kenneth Hall (4-of-5) all finished with 10 points apiece to round out the nine double-digit scorers. Dillon Dunford scored nine off the bench and Brandon Boggs posted seven in the victory for the purple and gold.
WCU's seasonal leader in scoring - senior Harouna Mutombo - missed double figures, finishing with nine points on 17 minutes of playing time. He did, however, move into 18th in school history in scoring, by-passing Bubba Wilson (1975-78) now with 1,354 career points.
Toccoa Falls guard Josh Barrett led the Eagles with a17 points including four 3-pointers, three of which came in the second half.
The Catamounts recorded a season-high 24 assists on its 51 made baskets, while holding a commanding 62-to-16 rebounding advantage including a 26-to-3 edge on the offensive boards for 36 second chance points. WCU scored 70 points in the paint and converted the 27 Eagle turnovers into a combined 50 points.
Western Carolina (9-10, 3-3 SoCon) returns to Southern Conference play this Saturday afternoon as it travels to the Holmes Center in Boone, N.C., to face North Division foe - and archrival - Appalachian State. Saturday's game will be broadcast on ESPN3 with a 3:00 pm tip-off.
Post-Game Notes / Records:
- Points in a Single-Game: 141 (previous record was 133 vs. Toccoa Falls 11/26/01)
- Points in a Half: 72 in the 1st (previous record was 71 vs. Piedmont 1/25/71)
- Biggest Margin of Victory: 102 (previous record was 75, 133-58, vs. Toccoa Falls 11/26/01)
- Nine WCU players recorded double-digit scoring while six posted career-highs in points in the win
- Western Carolina's 102 point margin of victory ranks as the third largest in NCAA history according to the 2011-12 NCAA Men's Basketball Record Book ... Long Island recorded a 117-point victory over Medgar Evers (179-62) in 1997 and Purdue defeated Indiana State by 106 (112-6) back in 1911;
- WCU is only the fourth NCAA Division I team to win by 100-or-more points in a single game ... the Catamounts join Long Island (1997), Purdue (1911) and Texas (1916);
- WCU's 141 points ranks third in Southern Conference history, behind Furman on two occasions as the Paladins scored 154 vs. The Citadel in 1955 and Newberry in 1954 ... WCU's 141 points are the most for a SoCon team since Davidson scored 137 vs. Warren Wilson in 1991;
- Western Carolina remained perfect in the all-time series with Toccoa Falls (6-0) ... WCU has eclipsed the 100-point plateau in five of the six meetings against the Eagles including a school-record 141 in the win on Tuesday night;
- The Catamounts have won 43 of their last 50 home games including 28 of the last 33 Southern Conference games in Cullowhee ... Over the past three seasons, WCU is 41-6 (.872) at home ... During head coach Larry Hunter's tenure, the Catamounts are 64-21 (.753) at home over the past seven years;
- WCU has secured victories in 16 of the last 19 home meetings with non-league teams ... Since 2003, WCU is 33-6 (.846) against non-conference foes in Ramsey ... Under head coach Larry Hunter, the Catamounts are 23-5 (.821) in home games against non-SoCon foes;
- Redshirt senior Harouna Mutombo is the 39th different Catamount to score over 1,000 points in his career ... Mutombo moved into 18th in school history with 1,354 points - TOPS among active SoCon players in career scoring ... On Tuesday night, he by-passed Bubba Wilson (1,350 points, 1975-78) and is just six points shy of 17th-place Cory Largent (1,360 points from 1999-2002);
- With four made 3-pointers against Toccoa Falls, senior guard Keaton Cole moved into ninth-place on WCU's career charts now with 145 made treys in his four-year WCU career ... The Toronto, Ontario, Canada native is just 10 made 3-pointers shy of former teammate Brandon Giles who made 155 3-pointers from 2006-10.