GREENVILLE, S.C. - The Western Carolina men’s basketball struggled offensively Wednesday night as the host Paladins of Furman University shot at a 54.5 percent clip to pull away for an 85-37 victory. The win gave Furman a school record 14-straight Southern Conference wins at home while the 37 points tied a season low for the Catamounts which they set earlier this season against West Virginia.
WCU shot just 26.8 percent from the field in the contest including 21.4 percent in the first half. The Catamounts were led by a trio of scorers including juniors Haboubacar Mutombo and Ashley Williams and freshman Adam Sledd. All three scored six points in the contest as the Catamounts were held without a double-digit scorer for the third time this season.
Mutombo led the Catamounts on the boards with seven rebounds while Sledd collected five.
Both the Paladins and Catamounts turned the ball over 14 times while Furman took a 44-32 lead on the boards.
The Paladins were led by Devin Sibley who scored a game-high 25 points in the victory while Kris Acox added 12 points and 11 rebounds. Two other Paladins scored in double-figures including Jordan Lyons, who came off the bench for 16 points, and Daniel Fowler who added 11.
WCU fell behind early and was never able to recover as the Paladins took a 40-14 lead into the halftime break. The second half would see the Paladins increase their advantage as they outscored the Catamounts 45-23 in the second stanza.
The victory improves Furman’s record to 13-8 overall and 6-2 in league action while the Catamounts drop to 6-15 overall and 1-7 in conference play.
WCU will be back in action this Saturday, Jan. 28 as the Catamounts host rival Wofford inside the Ramsey Center for a rare Saturday 7 pm tip.