CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. --- The Chattanooga Mocs (10-17/4-10) lost a heartbreaking 77-76 decision to visiting UNCG (11-15/9-5) in Southern Conference North Division play Saturday night. It's the third one-point loss in league play for UTC and third in the final possession this season.
Junior Drazen Zlovaric (Novi Sad, Serbia) scored a season-high 22 points and grabbed seven rebounds in the loss. Senior Jahmal Burroughs (New Orleans, La.) had his first career double-double with 10 points and a career-best 12 rebounds.
Trevis Simpson led the Spartans with 28 points. Kyle Randall and Derrell Armstrong had 11 and 10 points, respectively, off the bench.
UNCG led by as many as 10 in the game and was in control up nine, 61-52, on a Drew Parker three-pointer with 9:14 to play. The Mocs were down, but not out.
Junior Ricky Taylor (Brownsville, Tenn.) and Zlovaric powered a 15-2 UTC run to take the lead. Taylor scored six of the first eight points in the spurt closing the margin to three, 63-60, with a layup at 6:19. Zlovaric scored on back-to-back possessions as a Keegan Bell (Huntsville, Ala.) free throw at the four-minute mark put the Mocs up four, 67-63.
The Spartans went without a field goal for nearly seven minutes when Simpson canned a three-pointer to cut the UTC lead to one, 69-68, with 2:29 remaining. Omar Wattad (Johnson City, Tenn.) answered in the next possession to push it back to a three-point contest entering the final two minutes.
The two teams traded free throws on their next possessions. Aloysius Henry made two for the Spartans before Wattad hit three with 1:39 to go, giving the Mocs a four-point cushion, 74-70.
Simpson hit a deep three just 10 seconds later to make it a one-point game, 74-73. Zlovaric was up to the task on the UTC end with his final basket of the night, pushing the lead back to three, 76-73, at 1:01.
Henry went back to the line to make two more for UNCG. After Wattad's three-pointer was off the mark at the end of the shot clock, Armstrong got to the basket with a driving layup to put the Spartans up 77-76 with 16 seconds to play.
On the Mocs' final possession, Taylor pump faked for a contested look, but his shot was off the mark. The long rebound came out to Bell. His double-clutch three-pointer at the buzzer missed giving the Spartans sole possession of first place in the SoCon North.
Wattad had 15 points with three rebounds, three assists and a career-high two blocks. Taylor added 12 points.
Chattanooga hits the road Wednesday facing Appalachian State at 7 p.m. Listen to the "Voice of the Mocs" Jim Reynolds on ESPN 105.1 FM in Chattanooga or on GoMocs.com via MocsVision. Follow @GoMocs on twitter for stats and notes in game and go to GoMocs.com for links to live stats as well as post-game information.
UTC returns to McKenzie Arena next Saturday hosting The Citadel at 7 p.m. The SoCon Saturday ticket package is available which includes ticket and food for each Saturday league game throughout the season. It provides one reserved ticket and a food voucher for a small coke, popcorn and pizza all for $10. It must be purchased in advance of game day.
Tickets can be purchased by calling 266-MOCS (6627) or by visiting the UTC Gate One Ticket Office or online at GoMocs.com using "Saturday" promo code by Friday midnight. BI-LO is partnering with the Chattanooga Mocs to offer the BI-LO BOGO promotion for SoCon games this season. Just show your BI-LO Bonus Card at the ticket gate on game day for a Mocs SoCon game to buy one ticket and get one free.GoMocs.com is the official website of the Chattanooga Mocs. The Mocs can also be followed on their official Facebook page, www.facebook.com/ChattanoogaMocs, or on Twitter, www.twitter.com/GoMocs. Find out how to join the UTC Mocs Club and support more than 300 student-athletes by clicking here.