Wilmington, N.C. – Freshman Adam Smith poured in 20 points and UNC Wilmington buried 8-of-14 chances from three-point range to down Furman, 72-61, in the final non-conference contest of the season for the Paladins on Friday evening at Trask Coliseum.
Furman, playing its final game of a four-game road trip, dropped to 6-7 on the season with its third consecutive defeat while the Seahawks improved to 4-7 on the year with a victory in the first ever meeting between the schools.
The Paladins fashioned a 15-8 lead on back-to-back baskets from Chris Toler and a Jordan Loyd bucket at the 12:53 mark before the Seahawks took control by outscoring Furman 32-10 over the remainder of the half to carry a 40-25 lead into intermission. Smith drained four first-half treys to score 18 of his 20 points in the opening 20 minutes as UNCW shot 7-of-11 beyond the arc in the period.
Senior Brandon Sebirumbi scored five points in the opening four minutes of the second half to help Furman trim the Seahawk lead to 46-34 with 16:00 to play, but UNCW answered with an 8-0 run to push its advantage to 54-34 on a pair of Trevor Deloach free throws with 12:35 remaining. The Paladins pulled with 12 points on three more occasions, but were unable to get any closer until David Brown buried a three-pointer with less than four second left for the final 11-point margin.
UNCW shot 48.3% from the field, including 57.1% from three-point range and committed just six turnovers on the night. The Seahawks outscored Furman 34-26 in the paint and converted 12 Furman turnovers into 13 points.
Tanner Milson joined Smith in double figures with 11 points while Keith Rendlemen netted nine points and grabbed seven rebounds. KK Simmons connected on 3-of-4 three-point attempts to add nine points.
Bryant Irwin and Charlie Reddick tallied 11 points apiece to lead four Paladins in double figures. Sebirumbi registered 10 points while Colin Reddick finished with 10 points and seven boards to match his brother for team-high rebounding honors.
Furman shot just 33.8% from the floor and connected on only 6-of-26 triples. The Paladins managed a 46-35 rebounding edge and converted on 11-of-15 trips to the foul line.
After finishing the non-conference portion of its schedule at 6-5, Furman returns to Southern Conference play on Thursday evening when it hosts The Citadel on YP.com Court at Timmons Arena. Tip-off versus the Bulldogs is set for 7 p.m.