By Carey Phillips
Western Carolina held off Tennessee Tech for a 74-69 non-conference overtime men’s basketball victory before 1,722 fans Dec. 8 at the Ramsey Center.
Nick Robinson led four Catamounts in double figures with 19 points. He was followed by Vonterius Woolbright with 17, Travion McCray with 15 and Marcus Banks with 11.
Jr. Clay topped the Golden Eagles with 15 points. Kenny White scored 14, and Keishawn Davidson and Daniel Ramsey both had 10.
Baskets by Robinson and Joe Petrakis gave WCU a 67-63 lead with 2:53 remaining in OT.
Clay scored the next four points for a 67-67 tie with 2:53 on the clock.
Woolbright’s two foul shots at the 1:50 mark put the Cats ahead to stay, 69-67. That started a run of seven of eight foul shots to seal the win.
The second half was one of streaks. A 9-2 spurt, including five by Davidson, put Tech up 43-35 after Ramsey’s layup with 12:49 on the clock.
McCray hit a trio of three-pointers in a 13-3 run, capped by Robinson’s basket, giving Western a 58-55 edge at the 3:46 mark.
The Eagles scored the next eight points for a 63-58 lead on Mamoudou Diarra’s layup with 35 seconds to play.
Robinson’s three-pointer tied it 63-63 with 18 seconds left, and Tech missed two chances to win in regulation.
With McCray scoring six straight points, WCU jumped to a 12-3 lead with 13:46 remaining in the first half.
The Eagles reeled off nine unanswered points, including four by Ramsey, for a 12-12 tie with 10:16 on the clock.
Neither team led by more than three the rest of the half.
Petrakis’ layup with 45 seconds to play gave the Cats a 25-23 halftime lead.
Tech made 34.6 percent of its field goal tries, and WCU connected on 32.9 percent.
Woolbright and Robinson had double-doubles as they claimed 15 and 10 rebounds, respectively, helping Western to a 52-49 edge on the boards. Clay led the Eagles with eight.
The Cats committed nine turnovers, and Tech had eight.
Completing the WCU scoring were Petrakis with six, Marvin Price with five and Tyler Harris with one.