Feb. 11, 2013
Cullowhee, N.C. - Trey Sumler scored Western Carolina's final seven points including a game-winning jumper with 2.3 seconds remaining on the Ramsey Center clock as the Catamounts knocked off the Wofford Terriers, 57-56, Monday night in Southern Conference action.
Trailing much of the second half after a 16-to-4 Wofford run, the Catamounts clawed back into contention, forcing the game's fourth tie on a jumper by Tawaski King that capped a 7-0 WCU and knotted the game at 50 at the 2:25 mark. After two free throws by Wofford's Indiana Faithfull, Sumler buried a 3-pointer to give WCU a one-point, 53-52, lead with just under two minutes remaining in regulation.
Karl Cochran pushed the visitors back in front just inside the final minute only to see Sumler respond with an acrobatic lay-up down the right rail to again teeter the balance back to the Purple & Gold, 55-54. On Wofford's next possession, Spencer Collins handed the Terriers the lead back with a runner down the lane with just 16 seconds showing to set-up Sumler's last possession heroics.
King salted the win away for the Catamounts by stealing Faithfull's inbounds pass near mid-court, tipping it away before corralling the ball, bear-hugging the orb near mid-court as the horn sounded.
Sumler finished with a game-high 26 points, scoring 14 of WCU's final 16 points over the closing seven and a half minutes of regulation. He was the lone Catamount in double figures. Including the game winner, the Rocky Mount, N.C., native capped both halves with a dramatic, buzzer-beating jump shot.
With WCU holding for the final offering of the first half, Wofford fouled twice as the clock ticked away. Taking an in-bounds pass in the backcourt, Sumler drove up the floor, split a pair of Terrier defenders and drained a 3-pointer and was fouled in the act. He missed the free throw as Western Carolina took a 28-23 lead into the halftime locker room.
In addition to Sumler, King finished with nine points and six boards while Brandon Boggs scored eight.
Collins finished with 20 points on 7-of-12 shooting for the Terriers with Cochran on his heels with 19 points with three 3-pointers in the losing effort. Lee Skinner finished with a game-high 10 rebounds, chipping in six points.
Neither team was able to get away in the first half, both shooting in the mid-30s from the floor. The Terriers held a short-lived, one-point edge in the first half as WCU managed to pull ahead by a game-high eight points inside the final 10 minutes of the opening stanza. Wofford closed to within two points in the final 30 seconds of the first half before Sumler's half-ending 3-pointer.
The Catamounts led by seven just 30 seconds into the second half, but Wofford outscored the home squad 25-to-11 out of the locker room including the 16-to-4 run to take their largest lead of the game at seven points.
Led by Sumler with eight boards, Western Carolina out rebounded the Terriers 35-to-26, as the Catamounts pulled down 12 offensive boards.
Amidst a stretch of playing five games in a 10-day span, Western Carolina plays its final two road games of the season this week. The Catamounts visit preseason North Division favorite, UNCG, and the league's leading scorer in Trevis Simpson on Thursday night at the Greensboro Coliseum before tangling with the divisional leader, Elon, on Saturday evening. Tip-off of both games is scheduled for 7:00 pm.
Western Carolina vs. Wofford - Post-Game Notes:
- Western Carolina improved to 25-19 all-time against Wofford, winning its second-straight game against the Terriers in the head-to-head series ... WCU won its seventh-straight home game over Wofford, a streak that dates back to the 2000-01 season ... the Catamounts are 14-8 against the Terriers in Cullowhee all-time;
- WCU halted a three-game winless drought in games played in the Ramsey Center, scoring its first home win since defeating UNCG on Jan. 12;
- WCU has now won 51 of its last 64 (.797) home games including 34 of its last 44 (.772) SoCon games in Cullowhee ... Over the past three seasons, WCU is 49-13 (.790) at home ... During Larry Hunter's tenure, the Catamounts are 72-27 (.727) inside the Ramsey Center;
- Tom Tankelewicz added to his regular season 3-pointers made total and inched closer to the WCU single-season record book ... the Apex, N.C., native has 63 made treys on the year to stand just one shy a three-way tie for 10th on the single-season chart ... Jake Robinson (2006-07), Casey Rogers (1998-99) and David Donerlson (1989-90);
-Trey Sumler finished with 26 points on Monday night - the 14th time in his career he has eclipsed the 20-point mark ... He also leapfrogged three players in WCU's career scoring chart, currently standing with 1,301 career points ... Sumler moved past former teammate Jake Robinson (24th, 1,287), Albert Toomer (23rd, 1,291) and Kenny Trimier (1,292, 1980-83) into 21st in school history;
- Sumler additionally hit four 3-pointers on Monday giving him 143 made treys in his career ... He moved past Terry Boyd (142, 1991-92) into 10th place on the career chart ... It was the third career top-10 chart he's graced in the past week ... Sumler additionally ranks 10th with 338 career assists and 10th with 140 career steals;
- Western Carolina head coach Larry Hunter scored career win No. 626 on Monday night while picking up his 117th victory as the Catamount skipper.