CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. --- The senior duo of Ricky Taylor (Brownsville, Tenn.) and Omar Wattad (Johnson City, Tenn.) combined for 46 points to lead the Chattanooga Mocs (10-16/4-9) 83-75 over Elon (13-11/8-5) in Southern Conference North Division action Thursday night. Taylor (13) and Wattad (14) had 27 of those points in a second-half comeback.
Lucas Troutman hit one of two free throws at 12:11 to give the Phoenix a 57-51 lead. After a Jahmal Burroughs (New Orleans, La.) layup at 11:22, Wattad buried a deep three-pointer to make it a one-point ball game, 57-56, with 9:59 remaining. That was Wattad's 14th point of the second frame, turning the game over to Taylor.
Taylor tied the score at 59-all on a three-pointer in front of the Mocs bench at 9:13. Freshman Ronrico White (Knoxville, Tenn.) put UTC up for good, 62-59, burying a trey from the opposite corner on the next possession at 8:32. Taylor capped the 14-2 run with an old-fashioned three-point play 23 seconds later pushing the lead to six, 65-59.
Elon, the SoCon North Division leader, cut the margin to two twice. The first came on a Troutman slam off a nice feed from Sebastian Koch at 5:08, 67-65. Two Burroughs free throws extended the lead back to four before another Troutman basket made it 69-67 at 4:27.
Taylor scored the next five points on two free throws and a dagger of a three-pointer at 2:19 off a nice pass from Wattad. Up seven, 74-67, the Mocs kept the pedal to the floor. Taylor made a steal on the ensuing Phoenix possession and Drazen Zlovaric (Novi Sad, Serbia) followed Taylor's missed layup hitting his own to make it a nine-point game, 76-67, with 1:53 to go.
After starting three-for-eight from the free throw line, Chattanooga hit nine of its last 10. That included five-for-six in the game's final 43.3 seconds. Wattad's 14 second-half points came in the first 10 minutes, while Taylor's 13 came in the final 10.
Burroughs tied his career high of 11 points while setting a new high with game-high nine rebounds. Zlovaric added 12 points and eight rebounds, while Wattad grabbed eight boards of his own.
Elon had five players in double figures led by Koch's 20. Jack Isenbarger had 14 points and eight assists, while Troutman tallied 13 points. Drew Spradlin and Ryley Beaumont added 12 and 10 points, respectively.
Chattanooga shot 49.2 percent making 30 of 61 from the field and 45.8 percent from three-point range hitting 11 of 24. UTC made 58.3 percent (7-12) from beyond the arc in the second half.
The Mocs stay home on Saturday hosting UNCG as the second-game in a doubleheader with the women's team. The Lady Mocs take on College of Charleston at 5 p.m. Blackout conditions are in effect as fans are encouraged to wear black.
The SoCon Saturday ticket package includes ticket and food for each Saturday league game throughout the season. It includes 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.
Listen to the "Voice of the Mocs" Jim Reynolds on ESPN 105.1 FM in Chattanooga or on GoMocs.com via MocsVision where live video is also available. 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.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.