CULLOWHEE, NC – Redshirt Junior Tre Jackson led three players by double digits with 14 points, but Gardner-Webb used a strong first half to earn a 71-55 win over Western Carolina in non-conference action on Wednesday night at Ingles Court at the Ramsey Center.
Gardner-Webb improves to 2-5 as WCU falls to 4-4.
next to jackson, Tyzhaun Claude and Vonterius Woolbright both scored 11 points. Jackson snagged the team’s best seven rebounds. Russell Jones Jr added eight points along with a best three steals of the game.
Kareem Reid led four Gardner-Webb players by double digits with 15 points, followed by DQ Nicholas and Anthony Selden with 14 points each. Julien Soumaoro added 11 points. Lucas Stieber scored seven rebounds as the team’s best.
In a tie just under 17 minutes into the first half, the Runnin’ Bulldogs extended their lead to 8-4 at the U16 media timeout. A Woolbright layup brought the Catamounts to two. 12-10, at the 12:08 mark the Runnin’ Bulldogs went on a 7-0 sprint that was crowned by three Soumaoro free throws to give a 19-10 lead just before mid-half. Jackson’s 3-pointer with 8:43 remaining took WCU to six, 21-15 before Gardner-Webb capitalized on a 9-2 run for a 30-17 advantage at the 5:17 mark. A Stieber three-point game in the last few seconds sent the Runnin’ Bulldogs into the half with a 36:21 lead.
Two Seldon free throws gave the visitors a 47-28 lead with 15-31 to play in the second half. Jackson sank a 3-pointer at 11:20 to put the Catamounts 13, 53-40, but WCU didn’t come close the rest of the way.
Gardner-Webb had a 36-29 advantage in rebounds and outplayed the Catamounts 44-16 in the paint. For the game, the Runnin’ Bulldogs finished 27-to-56 (48.2 percent) out of field, 4-to-16 (25 percent) behind the 3-point line, and 13-to-18 (72.2 percent). ) at the end of the free-throw line. WCU was 15-44 (34.1 percent) from the field, 7-23 (30.4 percent) on 3-point attempts, and 18-24 (75 percent) on the free-throw line.
Staying home WCU Saturday hosts the USC Upstate at 5:30 p.m. in the second half of a basketball doubleheader with the Catamount women’s team taking on UAB at 2:00 p.m
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