UNCW Seahawks (5-13 SU, 3-11 ATS, 10-4 O/U) at Charleston Cougars (12-6 SU, 7-8 ATS, 8-7 O/U)
Line: Charleston -11
Last year’s champion meets this year’s pre-season favorite in a CAA battle on Thursday night. UNCW (2-4 CAA) is coming off back-to-back overtime games. They upset Elon on the road, 80-78 last Thursday in overtime and then fell to Northeastern, 81-77 at home in overtime on Saturday. Charleston is coming off a 63-58 loss at Elon on Saturday to fall to 3-3 in the league. Last season, the Cougars beat UNCW on the road by one and lost at home by six.
Seahawks can’t finish against Huskies
UNCW trailed most of their game against Northeastern on Saturday. The Huskies led for most of the game and had a 3-point lead with a second left. Ty Taylor was fouled by Devon Bagley to give the Seahawks a chance to put the game in overtime. Taylor made all three shots, but after an early lead in overtime, Northeastern outscored UNC Wilmington, 13-9 overall to win the game by four. Jalen Fornes led the Seahawks with 24 points and eight boards. Jordan Talley added 17 points and four assists but fouled out in 30 minutes. Big man Devontae Cacok chipped in with 15 points and seven boards on 6-of-12 shooting.
Fornes is a 6-3 sophomore who is averaging 12.3 points on 48 percent shooting (41.8% 3pt). He gives UNCW a third option behind Cacok (17.5ppg, 12.9rpg) and Talley (16.1ppg, 5.9apg). Now if they can defend a little better, they can start winning some games. While they are averaging 77.2 points per game on 43 percent shooting (32.8% 3pt). They are allowing a whopping 87.1 points on 59.8 percent shooting (42.8% 3pt).
Cougars struggle on offense
In a weird bit of scheduling, Charleston has already played Towson twice and Elon once, both teams are considered the Cougars’ biggest competitors to the CAA crown. In their loss to Elon, the offense just never really got it going. Elon went on a 10-0 run early in the second half to erase a nine-point deficit. Later, they added a 12-0 run to take a 51-39 lead with 9:26 left in the game. But the Cougars had their own 12-2 run to pull within 53-51 but never took back the lead. Charleston shot just 36.8 percent from the field and 7-of-24 (29.2%) from beyond the arc. They did hold the Phoenix to 37.5 percent shooting and 11-of-33 (33.3%) from beyond the arc. The Cougars didn’t do a great job of sharing the ball, with just nine assists to 10 turnovers.
Joe Chealey, who averages 17.6 points per game, 5.1 rebounds and 3.9 assists, was held to 14 points on 4-of-18 shooting (2-11 3pt). Jarrell Brantley (17.4ppg, 6.5 rpg) added 16 points and seven boards, while guard Grant Riller chipped in with 14 points, four rebounds, three assists and four turnovers. On the season, the Cougars average 71.1 points per game on 43.6 percent shooting (34.7% 3pt). They allow 67.4 points on 42.7 percent shooting (33.8% 3pt).
- 1-6 ATS last 7 road games.
- 2-8 ATS last 10 after a SU loss.
- 18-8-1 ATS last 27 after an ATS loss.
- 8-3 ATS last 11 after a SU loss.
At some point, Charleston will need to start winning games on the road. Fortunately for them, the tournament is held in Charleston so they don’t have to travel. UNCW is 1-6 on the road and outside a shocking road win over Elon (both schools are in N.C.), they have been dreadful and barely competitive. Charleston in a rout.