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Furman Downs Western Carolina In SoCon Quarterfinals, 97-73; Paladins Match School Record With 23rd Victory

Furman Downs Western Carolina In SoCon Quarterfinals, 97-73; Paladins Match School Record With 23rd Victory

Furman Fan Events


Asheville, N.C. -- Senior Daniel Fowler scored 18 points to pace five Paladins in double figures and Furman shot 55.9% as a team en route to a 97-73 victory over Western Carolina in the quarterfinal round of the Southern Conference Men's Basketball Championship on Saturday night at the U.S. Cellular Center in Asheville, N.C.

With the victory, Furman (23-9) matched the 1980 and 2017 Paladins with a school record 23 wins and advanced to face No. 2 seed ETSU in the semifinal round of the SoCon Men's Basketball Championship at 6:30 p.m. on Sunday at the U.S. Cellular Center.

Fowler, a native of Acworth, Ga., hit on 6-of-7 shots from the field to lead Furman to its seventh straight win, while Jordan Lyons poured in 15 points and forward Matt Rafferty totaled 14 points, nine rebounds, five assists and five steals. Senior John Davis III contributed 12 points and freshman Alex Hunter posted a career-high with 10 points.

Senior Geoff Beans knocked down a four-point play with 13:18 to go in the first half to erase a one-point deficit and send the Paladins on a 14-0 run that Clay Mounce capped with a putback jam to give Furman a 26-13 advantage with 9:15 left in the period. Five Paladins scored on the decisive run.

Furman never led by fewer than 10 points the rest of the way and built its lead to as many as 21 points before taking a 50-31 lead into the locker room. Western Carolina cut the lead down to 13 at 64-51 with under 12 minutes to play and trailed 69-55 with under 10 minutes to go, but Furman used a 17-3 run to seal the victory, its third of the year versus the Catamounts.

The Paladins shot 64.3% in the first half to build their lead and finished the game 8-for-21 from three-point range and 23-of-28 at the foul line. The Catamounts (13-19) shot 44.1%, but made only 6-of-18 tries from behind the arc and were outscored 46-34 in the paint.

Marcus Thomas came off of the bench to lead Western Carolina with 19 points, while Mike Amius tallied 14. Deriece Parks netted 12 and Ashley Williams rounded out the Catamounts' double figure scorers with 10 points.

Tickets for the SoCon semifinals will be on sale at the U.S. Cellular Center on Sunday. The Furman versus ETSU game will be streamed live on ESPN3 and the WatchESPN app with Pete Yanity and Dean Keener calling the action. Fans can listen to the Furman IMG Sports Network broadcast with play-by-play voice Dan Scott on FoxSports 1440AM, thru the TuneIn Radio App and on StretchAudio at FurmanPaladins.com.

Furman will host a pregame gathering for fans on Sunday at 4:00 p.m. at Capella on 9, which is located on the rooftop at The AC Hotel (10 Broadway St. in Asheville). A pep rally and team send-off will take place at 4:40 p.m. on Saturday at The AC Hotel. Click here for more information about Furman sponsored events and gatherings at the 2018 SoCon Basketball Championships.

The winner of Sunday's game will advance to the SoCon Championship Game on Monday at 9 p.m. The finals will be televised live on ESPN2.