Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Game #16: UNCG

UNCG Spartans

Western Carolina opens the SoCon season on Thursday, January 2d against the UNCG Spartans in the friendly confines of the Ramsey Center, where the Cats are 6-0 this season. The Catamounts are 9-1 against the Spartans in the last ten games played and 16-4 in Cullowhee against UNCG. The Cats won the last meeting (Feb. 14, 2013) by a final score of 70-68.

Third year head coach Wes Miller's Spartans are traveling to Cullowhee with a 7-8 overall record, and are coming off a very nice win against the Virginia Tech Hokies in Blacksburg, Va. and a close loss to NC State on Monday night.

UNCG is just 1-3 on the road this season, with road losses to Wake Forest, Rutgers, and North Carolina.  

After a disappointing start in their season, the Spartans have won two of their last four games against some pretty stiff competition. The Spartans picked up a 78-65 home win over James Madison  on December 18th, followed by a close loss to Wake Forest on the road. They then picked up a huge win over Virginia Tech, also on the road, followed by a four point loss to NC State, last Monday night.   While UNCG does have 7 wins thus far, three are against non-Division I teams.

UNCG is averaging 71.6 points per game, hitting 44.9% of their field goals, including 35.5% of 3-pointers, and 67.63% of free throws.   The Spartans currently have three players scoring in double figures, lead by redshirt junior forward Kyle Cain (6-7, 210) with 15.8 ppg, followed by freshman guard Tevon Saddler (6-4, 210) with 12.2 ppg, sophomore forward Kayel Locke (6-5, 240) with 12.1 ppg, and junior forward Nicholas Paulos (6-7, 185) is just missing double figures with 9.7 ppg.

The Spartans are averaging 14.6 turnovers and 5.2 steals per game.   As a team, UNCG is pulling down 37.0 rebounds per game.

UNCG probable starters-
#1 Drew Parker, 6-1 207 lbs, Sr, guard
#13 Kayle Locke, 6-5 240 lbs, So, forward
#14 Kyle Cain, 6-7 210 lbs, Jr, forward
#31 Nicholas Paulos, 6-7 185 lbs, Jr, forward
#44 Tyrone Outlaw, 6-6 205 lbs, Fr, guard

RealTimeRPI projects a 85-75 win for the Catamounts at home in the Ramsey Center.


WCU:  241
UNGG: 237

WCU:  224
UNGG: 274

WCU:  223
UNGG: 294

WCU:  227
UNGG: 258

Men's BasketballUNC Greensboro7:00 PM      Listen LIVE  

Join the conversation by leaving a comment below

Baseball: 45 Days until First Pitch - #45 Taylor Sandefur

#45 Taylor Sandefur

Class:  RS Senior
Hometown:  Mechanicsville, Va.
High School:  Atlee HS
Height / Weight:  6-1 / 225
Position:  RHP
B/T:  R/R

2013 (Redshirt Junior): Returning from the shoulder injury that sidelined him in 2012, made seven appearances on the mound including four starts ... Posted a 5.27 ERA through 13.2 innings of work, striking out seven against eight walks ... Only three of the 16 hits allowed went for extra bases, all doubles ... Made his season debut by tossing two thirds of an inning of work on opening weekend against Pac-12 foe, Washington State (Feb. 16) ... Threw six solid innings against Longwood (Feb. 27), striking out four against two walks in picking up the win ... Made his second start of the season at SEC-foe, Georgia (March 5), limiting the Bulldogs to an unearned run on two hits despite walking four ... Tossed two innings in a limited starting role in WCU's road win at Kennesaw State (May 1); Summer League: Returned to the Waynesboro Generals of the Valley League where he pitched in seven games with three starts before leaving the squad at midseason ... Posted a 1-1 record with a 3.68 ERA through 22 innings of work ... Struck out 15 batters against six walks... Was named the Generals Player of the Week (June 17-23) after tossing five innings of two-hit relief in an 11-5 victory over Winchester on June 19 ... Additionally recorded four plate appearances, finishing 2-for-4 (.500) with a double and two strikeouts.

2012 (Junior): Suffered a shoulder injury during off-season drills in the fall of 2011 ... Missed the 2012 season after undergoing shoulder surgery ... Took a medical redshirt.

2011 (Sophomore): Appeared in 19 games - fifth on the team - including six starts (3rd) and 13 relief appearances out of the bullpen ... Tossed 43.2 innings on the season with a 2-3 overall record and an 8.86 ERA ... Ranked fourth on the team with 40 strikeouts, fanning at least one in 12 of his 19 appearances including four-or-more K's six times ... 17 of his strikeouts were looking ... Picked off two runners on the season ... Opened the season as a weekend starter with his first three starts coming on the weekend for WCU before being relegated to the bullpen ... Scored the victory in the season-opener against Morehead State (Feb. 18), striking out five in five innings of three-hit, scoreless work ... Twice matched his career-high of six strikeouts in the start at UNC Asheville (April 12) and in relief at home against ACC-foe, Clemson (April 27) ... Picked up his first career save by tossing two-thirds of an inning out of the bullpen as WCU downed Furman (May 13) in 16 innings ... Threw the final inning and a third, striking out one for the Catamounts in picking up the victory in the epic 20-inning game against Elon (May 25) in the conference championship event ... Pitched in the prestigious Cape Cod Baseball League during the summer.

2010 (Freshman): Pitched in 12 games including starting nine times, the most among WCU's freshmen hurlers ... Tossed 50.1 innings with a 5.19 ERA, striking out 24 against 30 walks ... Moved from a mid-week starter and bullpen pitcher into the Friday night starter role, making six-consecutive starts down the stretch in the season ... Made his first collegiate appearance at Gardner-Webb, surrendering one run on three hits with a pair of walks in two-thirds of an inning ... Made his first collegiate start against SIU-Edwardsville, walking three and striking out two in three innings of one-hit, three-run work in a no-decision ... Garnered his first collegiate career win after working five innings against High Point, limiting the Panthers to four runs on seven this with two strikeouts ... Twice fanned a career-best six including at Georgia Southern and in his final regular season start against Davidson ... Tossed a career-long 7.1 innings in the Southern Conference Tournament semifinals against Appalachian State, striking out on against two walks, only surrendering two runs on six hits ... WCU won eight of the 12 games in which he appeared including six of his starts ... Pitched alongside teammate Andrew Blackwell with the Waynesboro Generals of the Valley League during the summer ... Earned the Cy Young Award for most outstanding pitcher in the Valley League.

Prior to Western: Four year varsity member at Atlee High School in Mechanicsville, Va. ... Earned All-Academic honors during his four years at Atlee High School ... Earned All-District honors as a first baseman, utility player and pitcher during his three years at Atlee High School. Earned honorable mention all-region during his junior and senior seasons.

Personal: Full name is Taylor Kirkwood Sandefur ... Son of David and Donna Sandefur ... Father David played football at Lees-McRae College ... Brother, Ryan, played baseball at the University of Virginia.

Courtesy WCU Athletics Media Relations

Monday, December 30, 2013

Trey Sumler scores 40 in win over Milligan

Redshirt senior Trey Sumler scored a career-high 40 points in Western Carolina's 106-72 victory over the Milligan Buffaloes in the Ramsey Center on Monday night.

Sumler was 7 of 10 from 3-point range, while hitting 13 of 21 shots from the field. He hit 7 of 8 from the free-throw line, and picked up 7 rebounds, while making 3 assists, and one steal on his way to become the first Catamount since Kevin Martin in 2004 to duplicate that feat.

Mike Woods, Jr. led Milligan with 14 points.

Purple & Gold congratulates both the Catamounts on their win, and Trey his career high scoring night.

Join the conversation by leaving a comment below

46 Days until First Pitch - #46 Jeremy Null

#46 Jeremy Null

Class Junior
Hometown Claremont, N.C.
High School Bunker Hill HS
Height / Weight 6-8 / 230
Position RHP

Career: Through the first two seasons, has 172 career strikeouts to rank 20th in WCU's career record book ... Enters his junior season just 42 K's shy of WCU's all-time top 10 and is poised to make a run at the program's top five ... Null has thrown 164.0 career innings through 31 appearances, 28 of which have come in a starting role.

2013 (Sophomore): All 14 appearances on the season came in a starting role on the weekend for WCU ... Led the team with a 9-2 record and 109 strikeouts, recording double-digit K's four times ... His 109 strikeouts in 2013 rank him fifth in WCU's single-season record books ... Had at least four strikeouts in all 14 mount appearances ... Only issued 27 walks on the season, issuing two-or-fewer 10 times including three starts without giving up a base on balls ... Had nine, 100-or-more pitch outings, throwing at least 90 in all 14 starts ... Finished the season ranked tied for first in the SoCon in wins (9), second in strikeouts (109), fifth in ERA (3.46), third in opposing batting average (.240) and ninth in innings pitched (91.0) His last loss of 2013 came on April 5, securing victories in six of his last seven starts on the mound ... Posted two putouts and 17 fielding assists ... Named second team All-Southern Conference as a starting pitcher ... Named second team All-State by North Carolina Collegiate Sports Information Association (NCCSIA) ... Was twice tabbed a "Louisville Slugger" National Player of the Week by Collegiate Baseball, earning his first following a 13-strikeout performance in the opener against Pac-12 foe, Washington State (Feb. 15) and again following his career-high 14-strikeout win over Georgia Southern (April 19) ... Earned SoCon Pitcher of the Week following the GSU, tossing a gem to set the tone for the series ... In addition to striking out a career-high 14 batters and not issuing a walk in the 9-3 win, recorded 10 straight outs via strikeout between the fourth and seventh innings, limiting the Eagles to just three runs on five hits in eight innings ... Threw a career-long 8.1 innings in a home win over Wofford (May 10), limiting the Terriers to one run on just two hits after tossing the first four and a third hitless; Summer League: Pitched in five games including two starts for the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox in the prestigious Cape Cod League before leaving the team to take the remainder of the summer off ... Tossed 12 innings, striking out 15 batters in posting a 0-1 record with a save and a 6.00 ERA ... Surrendered 10 runs - eight of which were earned - on 15 hits in his five appearances with opponents hitting .294 against the right-hander ... Finished with a 11.25 strikeout per nine inning ratio.

2012 (Freshman): Made 17 appearances including 14 starts as the third weekend starting pitcher ... Finished the season with an overall record of 4-4 and a 5.05 ERA, tossing 73.0 innings with 63 strikeouts and 28 walks ... As a starter, had a 5.27 ERA with 58 K's and 26 walks ... Posted a 2.84 ERA in three appearances out of the bullpen, striking out five against two walks in 6.1 innings of work ... Recorded at least one strikeout in every start of his rookie season ... Named to the Southern Conference All-Freshman team ... Struck out a career-high eight batters in his collegiate debut, scoring the victory over Fordham (February 18) after tossing five and a third in the starting role ... Matched his career-best with eight K's in the first four innings against the College of Charleston (April 29), finishing with six innings of work while holding the Cougars to three runs on six hits ... Tossed a career-long seven innings in the starting role against Davidson (April 1), fanning six to open his career at 4-0 ... Threw five innings in relief in the Southern Conference tournament, holding eighth-seeded Furman (May 24) to two runs on six hits with three strikeouts.

Prior to Western Carolina: A two-time, All-Catawba Valley Athletic Conference selection as both a junior and senior, also garnering All-Region and All-Observer accolades ... Was named a Louisville Slugger High School All-American as a senior ... Was drafted by the Seattle Mariners in the 37th round of the 2011 Major League Baseball Draft.

Personal: Is the son of Stephen and Michelle Null ... Has a sister, Haley.

Note: Named the Pitching MVP during WCU's Fall College World Series, earning the victory in game one, striking out 12 of the 16 batters he faced through four and a third innings of work.

Courtesy WCU Athletics Media Relations

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Scanning the SoCon - Week Nine

Each week, our SoCon bloggers/message boarders (one representing each team) will vote on Power Rankings, a Game of the Week, and Player of the Week.  At least three will answer a series of questions on their team and things of interest around the SoCon.

Scanning the SoCon - Week Nine

The following is my submission to week eight of Scanning the SoCon. You can read the entire consolidated article and see everyone's answers to this week's questions at MocsMania

Power Rankings
3-Western Carolina
6-Georgia Southern
10-App State
11-The Citadel

Player of the Week
Kyle Cain, UNCG

Game of the Week
Elon at Western Carolina

Sum up your team.
Western Carolina - The Cats have not played since their last second loss at Georgia back on December 21. In case you didn't see that game, the Cats were called for 26 fouls by the SEC officials, while blowing the whistle only 13 times against the Bulldogs.

As we head into the SoCon season, if your team is leaving, which team in the SoCon are you going to miss the most? If your team is not leaving, which team that is leaving are you going to miss the most? Why?
For most WCU fans, I'd say we'll miss the Mountaineers the most. Like in football, the largest crowds in Ramsey are for ASU games. It's the rivalry that Catamount fans love to hate.

Which two SoCon coaches that are most on the hot seat right now? Why?
My guesses would be ASU's Jason Capel and The Citadel's Chuck Driesell. Capel in his 4th season at ASU is 3-8 on the season, without a DI win this season, and Driesell is 4-9 this season, after going only 8-22 in 2012-13. Both teams have dim prospects for improved seasons over last year.

What should your basketball team's New Years Resolution be? Why?
Since I'm sure we lead the conference in fouls, the New Year's resolution should be "To reduce personal fouls, and improve scoring consistency."

Join the conversation by leaving a comment below

47 Days until First Pitch - #47 Jonathan Waszak

It's 47 days until the 2014 season's first pitch and the first three game home series against the Ohio Bobcats.

#47 Jonathan Waszak

Class:  Sophomore
Hometown:  Wendell, N.C.
High School:  East Wake HS
Height / Weight:  6-6 / 245
Position:  RHP
B/T:  R/R

2013 (Freshman): Ranked tied for second on the team with 32 appearances on the season, 31 coming in relief with one start ... Posted a 4.81 ERA with 19 strikeouts against 10 walks ... Allowed 20 runs with 18 going as earned ... Of his 32 appearances, held opponents scoreless in 23 of them ... Just six of the 40 hits allowed went for extra bases ... Named to the Southern Conference's All-Freshman team ... Made his collegiate debut against Pac-12 foe, Washington State (Feb. 16-17), twice tossing a third of an inning out of the bullpen ... Pitched a career-long five innings against Eastern Kentucky (March 13) ... Made his first collegiate start at nationally-ranked Clemson (April 24) ... Struck out a career-high three in a road win at Appalachian State (May 17), earning his first career save with four innings of relief work; Summer League: Tossed 5.1 innings through four appearances on the mound for the Winchester Royals of the Valley League before leaving the team on June 20 to take the remainder of the summer off ... Countered three walks with four strikeouts, surrendering three hits without allowing a run ... Opponents were hitting just .188 against him.

Prior to Western Carolina: A three-year varsity letter winner, was a two-time All-Greater Neuse Conference selection as a junior and senior after posting back-to-back 5-3 records with five complete games ... Additionally named Academic All-Conference in his final two seasons as a prep ... Made the North Carolina State Games twice including after his senior season ... Also played basketball as a prep.

Personal: Full name is Jonathan Lee Waszak ... Is the son of Donna Waszak ... Has one sibling, Caitlin.

Courtesy WCU Athletics Media Relations

Saturday, December 28, 2013

2014 WCU Football Prospect - Marcel Johnson

Marcel Johnson 
Position: Athlete

Hometown: Knightdale, NC
High School: Knightdale
Height: 6-2 Weight: 195
40: 4.62 secs
Bench Max: 245
Squat Max: 385
Class: 2014 (High School)

Johnson has offers from Western Carolina, Old Dominion, and Charlotte.

Marcel's highlights -

Join the conversation by leaving a comment below

Game #15: Milligan College

Milligan College Buffaloes

The Milligan Buffaloes travel to Cullowhee on Monday, December 30th, game time is 7:00 pm.

Milligan College is a Christian liberal arts college located outside of Elizabethton in Carter County, Tennessee. The college has a student population of just over 1,200 students, and is a member of the NAIA and plays in the Appalachian Athletic Conference.

Head coach Bill Robinson's Buffaloes are currently 8-4 on the season, and have played exhibition games against DI opponents East Tennessee State, UAB, and Appalachian State. ASU extended their winning streak to three wins over non-DI teams with their 100-68 victory over the Buffaloes on December 21st.

Milligan has four players averaging in double figures, junior guard Mickey Woods (6'1") with 15.1 ppg, sophomore guard Cartree Pettis (6'2") with 13.4 ppg, senior guard Torian Sitton (6'4") with 11.4 ppg and junior center Morgan McLeod (6'7") at 10.5 ppg.  Milligan is averaging 84.6 points per game, hitting 47.5% field goals and 60.5% free throw attempts.  The Buffaloes average 13.8 turn overs per game and 8.3 steals.

Radio:  Catamount Sports Network
Live Stats:  GameTracker
Live Video:  Catamount All Access (fee)

Join the conversation by leaving a comment below

Thursday, December 26, 2013

2014 WCU Football Prospect - Luther Jones

Luther Jones
Position:  Defensive Tackle

Hometown: Blairsville, GA
High School:  Union County
Height: 6'1"
Weight: 290 lbs

Jones has offers from not only Western Carolina, but App State, Coastal Carolina, Furman, Georgia Southern, Georgia State, and Mercer.

 View game highlights of Luther Jones here

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas from Purple & Gold

Baseball: Cats tabbed 31st nationally, Attaway & Hoyle named Preseason All-America

After a record-setting 2013 season, including 39 victories with 23 in league play, the Western Carolina Catamount baseball team has been tabbed 31st in the national preseason poll by Collegiate Baseball, while senior shortstop Aaron Attaway and junior first baseman Jacob Hoyle were both named to the 2014 Louisville Slugger Pre-season All-America teams.

The preseason All-America honor from Collegiate Baseball is the second for Attaway, who was also selected by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA). It is the first preseason olade for Hoyle who was dubbed post-season Freshman All-America in 2012. The Catamounts are the lone selections from the Southern Conference on the trio of preseason squads picked nationally by Louisville Slugger.

Western Carolina is joined in the preseason poll by two other SoCon members, as both Appalachian State and The Citadel are in the "others receiving votes" portion of the national preseason poll.

Join the conversation by leaving a comment below

Monday, December 23, 2013

2014 WCU Football Prospect - Corey Holloway

Corey Holloway
Position:  Running Back

Hometown:  McDonough, GA
High School:  Eagle's Landing HS
Height: 5-11
Weight:  215

In addition to Western Carolina, Corey Holloway has drawn interest from Ga State, Kennesaw St., Syracuse, Georgia Tech and Vanderbilt.   Corey has offers from Ga State, KSU and Syracuse.

Scanning the SoCon - Week Eight (Mid-season Awards)

Each week, our SoCon bloggers/message boarders (one representing each team) will vote on a Game of the Week, Power Rankings and Player of the Week. This week, we add the Mid-season Awards) At least three will answer a series of questions on their team and things of interest around the SoCon.

 Scanning the SoCon - Week Eight

The following is my submission to week eight of Scanning the SoCon. You can read the entire consolidated article and see everyone's answers to this week's questions at MocsMania, here for part 1 and here for part 2.

Power Ranking 
3-Western Carolina
5-Georgia Southern
8-App State
11-The Citadel

Player of the Week
Stephen Croone, Furman

Game of the Week
UNCG at Virginia Tech

Player of the Year to date
Z. Mason, Chattanooga

Coach of the Year to date
Matt Matheny, Elon

Freshman of the Year to date
Brian White, the Citadel

Why are you voting for who you are voting for in Player of the Year?
At this point, I'm strongly looking at Z. Mason of Chattanooga. Certainly the Mocs leader on the floor. He's currently third in scoring, third in rebounding and first in blocked shots. I'd like to have Trey Sumler in that spot, however I just havn't seen the offensive consistency up to this point.

Which team has been the most pleasant surprise? Why?
Sorry, but I don't think ANY SoCon teams have played surprisingly well, all have been surprisingly bad.

Which team has been the biggest disappointment? Why?
Western Carolina - Inconsistent play in both offense and defense from a team loaded with senior experience, leadership, and talent

Outside of Davidson, Elon and Western Carolina, who is most likely to improve the most between now and March? Why?
UNCG. The Spartans seem to be improving weekly, I think it will continue as the team jells, I believe they have the most potential of the remaining teams

If you had to pick right now, which two teams do you think would make the SoCon Championship Game and who would win? Why?
The same two that have been #1 and #2 all season, Davidson and Elon. The only two teams that can win out of conference, D1 games.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

2014 WCU Football Verbal Commit - Nathan Dalton

Nathan Dalton
Position:  Tackle

Hometown:  East Flat Rock, NC
High School:  East Henderson HS
Height: 6'7"
Weight:  305

Nathan Dalton has verbally committed to Western Carolina to play football.  Dalton will play for NC in the upcoming Shrine Bowl.

View Nathan's highlights here

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Game #14: Georgia Bulldogs

On Saturday, December 21st, the Catamounts travel to Athens, Georgia to play the Georgia Bulldogs in a 2:00 pm game in the Stegeman Coliseum on the campus of the University of Georgia. The game can be seen on CSS and ESPN3.

Head Coach Mark Fox's Bulldogs are 5-4 overall on the season, and are 5-1 at home. The Bulldogs have wins over three SoCon teams this season, Wofford, Appalachian State, and Chattanooga, with only Davidson beating the Dogs in the Charleston Classic.

As a team, Georgia is averaging 76.6 points per game, shooting 40% field goals, while hitting 66% of their free throws.  The Bulldogs have four players currently scoring in double figures.  Sophomore guard Charles Mann (6-5, 210) leads the Dogs in scoring with 14/3 ppg, followed by sophomore guard Kenny Gaines (6-3, 195) with 12.4 points, junior forward Nemanji  Djurisic (6-8, 230) with 12.00 ppg and sophomore forward Brandon Morris (6-7, 215) with 10.8 ppg.

Georgia's projected starters are forward Marcus Thorton, forward Donte Williams, forward Cameron Forte, guard Charles Mann and guard Kenny Gaines.

Another winnable game for the Cats, but which team shows up? The road team that loses or the team that plays and wins in Cullowhee?  If the same old road team shows up in Athens, the Cats don't have a prayer of a chance, however, if we didn't score our years' quota of three's on Wednesday night for 2013, the Cats just may pull off the up-set.

Attaway Named Preseason All-America

Senior shortstop Aaron Attaway has been selected to the 14th-annual National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) preseason All-America team. Attaway was a third-team selection among the 57 baseball student-athletes recognized.

A product of Morganton, N.C., Attaway is coming off a season where he was named first team All-Southern Conference at shortstop while also earning second team All-State accolades from the North Carolina Collegiate Sports Information Association (NCCSIA).

He ranked tied for second on the team with a .363 batting average including a SoCon-leading 97 base hits - a mark that in addition to representing his career-best also ranked him tied for eighth in WCU's single-season record books, matching 2007 SoCon Player of the Year, Kenny Smith. Attaway also paced the SoCon with 68 runs scored, a mark that ranked him seventh in the final NCAA statistics.

Courtesy WCU Athletics Media Relations

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Game #13: Charleston Southern

Charleston Southern Buccaneers

The Buccaneers of Charleston Southern travel to Cullowhee on Wednesday, December 18th to play the Catamounts at 7:00 pm in the Ramsey Center, seeking to break their current two game losing streak.

Head Coach Barclay Radebaugh is in his ninth season as head men’s basketball coach at Charleston Southern, and his Bucs were selected as the Big South - South Division favorite in the preseason poll of the league's coaches.  CSU returns three starters and eight letterwinners from the 2012-13 squad that won 19 games, and won the Big South South Division title, and played in the NIT.

Currently, the Bucs are 3-5 overall this season, and 1-3 on the road.  After eight games, the Bucs are averaging 86.2 points per game, with 47% field goal shooting and 74.7% from the free throw line. The three-point shot has fueled CSU’s offensive production this season, as the Bucs are shooting 40.2 percent as a team from deep and are third nationally with 11.4 made threes per game. The Bucs are also among the national leaders in assists per game (18th), three-point field goal percentage (21st) and assist-to-turnover ratio (28th).

The Bucs have five players averaging in double figures, junior guard Saah Nimley leads the Bucs in scoring with 15.0 ppg, followed by senior guard Sheldon Strickland with 11.9 ppg, junior guard Arlon Harper with 11.6 ppg, followed by senior guard Matt Kennedy with 10.6 ppg and junior forward Will Saunders with 10.2 ppg

The projected starters for CSU are guard Nimley, guard Harper, guard Kennedy ,senior forward Paul Gombwer (6-6 217), and senior center Alhaji Fullah (6-8, 235). Sheldon Strickland and Will Saunders are both averaging double figures scoring to lead the way for a Bucs’ bench that is producing in a big way so far this season.

This is a winnable home game, so lets protect the home court.

Join the conversation by leaving a comment below

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Scanning the SoCon - Week Seven

Each week, our SoCon bloggers/message boarders (one representing each team) will vote on a Game of the Week, Power Rankings and Player of the Week. At least three will answer a series of questions on their team and things of interest around the SoCon.

 Scanning the SoCon - Week Seven

The following is my submission to week seven of Scanning the SoCon. You can read the entire consolidated article and see everyone's answers to this week's questions at MocsMania

Power Ranking
3-Western Carolina
5-Georgia Southern
8-App State
11-The Citadel

Player of the Week
Z. Mason, UTC

Game of the Week
Davidson at North Carolina

Sum up your team.
The Cats are 5-6 this season and have not played since a 68-76 setback to Coastal Carolina on December 4th, taking last week off for final exams. As I said last week, the lack of offensive consistency from last season's scoring leaders has resulted in many games that could have or should have been wins for the Catamounts.

Who is the SoCon's best pure shooter?
Trey Sumler

Name some college basketball rule changes you'd like to see. Why?
Eliminate rule 10, article 4 that took effect this season, it's resulting in excessive fouling and slows down the game. It has not improved scoring as hoped. I'd also like to see the 35 second clock reduced to 30 seconds. I think this would not only speed up the game, but could result in higher scoring games that was projected with the implementation of rule 10.

What are some things you'd like to see the commissioner do to promote the SoCon? Why?
I don't know what the commissioner can do at this point to promote SoCon basketball. The individual institutions must make a commitment to upgrade their programs, then follow through with the resources to accomplish any upgrades in the basketball product, which many of the institutions seem reluctant to do. I would like to see the conference utilize some of their funds to upgrade the streaming video in the individual member schools, something on the line of what the Big South has accomplished.

Join the conversation by leaving a comment below

Monday's WCU Sports Events

Men's Basketball 
Western Carolina at Cleveland State
Location/TimeWolstein Center (13,610), Cleveland Ohio / 7 PM
TV: none
RadioCatamount Sports Network
Live Stats:   Presto
Live Video:  Horizon League Video  (free)

Women's Basketball 
Charleston Southern at Western Carolina
Location/Time: Ramsey Center, Cullowhee, NC / 7 PM
Radio: Power 90.5  WWCU
TV: none
Live Video: Catamount All Access
Live Stats:  GameTracker 
WCU Game Notes

Join the conversation by leaving a comment below

Game #12: Cleveland State Vikings

Cleveland State Vikings

The Catamounts will travel to the state of Ohio for the third time this season, and will be visiting the Cleveland State Vikings of the Horizon League on Monday, December 16th at 7:00 pm in the Wolstein Center (13,610).   This will the the second Horizon League opponent of the season, having met Wright State on Nov. 30th in Dayton, Ohio. This will be the first meeting ever between Cleveland State and the Catamounts on the basketball court.

CSU Head Coach Gary Waters' Vikings were picked to finish third (just behind Wright State) in the Horizon League Preseason Poll.  Cleveland State sophomores Anton Grady (forward 6-8 225) and Bryn Forbes (guard 6-3, 173) were named to the Horizon League second team preseason all conference team. Grady returns after playing in just six games last year due to a knee injury. He was averaging close to 14 points and 6 rebounds at the time of his injury. Forbes, last year's Horizon League Freshman of the Year,  is one of the top outside shooters in the league, connecting on 61-of-157 (.389)  three-pointers last season, earning a spot on the CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major Freshman All-American team.

Cleveland State has three players scoring in double figures so far this season, Forbes is averaging 19.3 ppg, sophomore guard Trey Lewis (6-2, 190) is putting up 14.4 ppg, and junior guard Charlie Lee (5-8, 160) is coming in at 12.8 ppg.   Forbes and Lee are hitting 49% and  42% respectively from three point range.  The Vikings are scoring 76 ppg and are hitting 75% as a team from the free throw line.

Currently the Vikings are 4-5 on the season, 3-1 when playing at home and 1-4 on the road, with wins over Ball State, Robert Morris, Texas-Arlington, and Iona.  The Cats enter this game on a 3 game losing skid, while the Vikings have lost their last two games.

RealTime RPI projects a 21 point loss  (66-87) by Western Carolina to Cleveland State.  Based on the play of the Catamounts in the last four games, I see no reason to doubt that projection of a mid-pack Horizon League team over this years' inconsistent Catamounts.  However, this is the perfect opportunity and time for the Cats to pull together and take control in a very week SoCon.  The senior leadership on this team should step up and make their mark this season.  They may just save their coaches job if they do.

Courtesy Daily Catamount

Rankings - (as of  12-13-13)
RPI:  Western - 233;   CSU -  195
Sagarin:  Western - 241;   CSU -  116
Massey:  Western - 236;   CSU -  139
Pomeroy:  Western - 229;   CSU -  130

Radio: Catamount Sports Network
Live Stats:   Presto
Live Video:  Horizon League Video  (free)
TV: None

Courtesy Daily Catamount

Join the conversation by leaving a comment below

Saturday, December 14, 2013

2014 WCU Football Verbal Commit - Andrew Miles

Andrew Miles
Position:  Offensive Tackle

Hometown:  Flowery Branch, GA
High School:  Flowery Branch
Hight:  6'5"
Weight:  290 lbs

Andrew Miles announced today that he has committed to Western Carolina for football.  Miles joins Flowery Branch team mate Jackson McDonald in committing to Western Carolina.  Miles received offers from Air Force, Georgia State, Western Carolina and has drawn interest from Duke and Georgia Tech

Officially committed to Western Carolina! Proud to be a catamount!!!

More than excited to play college football with my brother

View Andrew Miles highlights here
Join the conversation by leaving a comment below

'Celebration of Catamount Baseball' Set for Jan. 18

The 2014 "Celebration of Catamount Baseball Fundraiser Banquet" will be held on Saturday, Jan. 18 in the Grand Ballroom of the on-campus A.K. Hinds University Center.

Headlining the 2014 Catamount baseball banquet is keynote speaker, former WCU relief pitcher - and current Kansas City Royals closer - Greg Holland. Last season, Holland became the first former Catamount baseball player to ever be named a Major League Baseball All-Star.

"We are honored to have former Catamount great and current MLB All Star, Greg Holland, back on campus for our baseball banquet," said  WCU head coach Bobby Moranda, who is entering his seventh season at WCU. "His story of tremendous perseverance and achievement are unprecedented. To go from a WCU walk-on to a Major League All Star is an inspiration to all."

RSVP's are requested by Monday, January 13. All funds raised through this event will directly support the operation of the WCU baseball program.

Join the conversation by leaving a comment below

Friday, December 13, 2013

2014 WCU Football Prospect - Bradley Dewberry

Bradley Dewberry
Position:   Quarterback / Athlete

Hometown:  McDonough, GA
High School: Eagles Landing Christian Academy
Height: 6' 0"
Weight:  180
40: 4.6 secs
Bench Max: 235
Squat Max: 300
GPA: 3.5
Class: 2014 (High School)

Indiana, Georgia State and Western Carolina have shown interest in Bradley and Presbyterian has offered him.

Women's Basketball GPA Sets The Standard

Thursday, December 12, 2013

2014 WCU Football Prospect - Anthony Faggione

Anthony Faggione
Position:  Offensive Guard / Center

Hometown: Clemmons, NC
High School:  West Forsyth HS
Height:  6'4"
Weight:  285 lbs
40: 5.9 secs
Bench Max: 285
Squat Max: 365

Besides Western Carolina, Tony has received interest from NC State and Davidson.  No offers at this time.

View highlights on Tony here

Mutombo joins London Lightning

Western Carolina's own Harouna Mutombo joins Ontario's London Lightning of the National Basketball League of Canada.

“Harouna has been working out with NBA trainers in Atlanta, Georgia, and jumped at this opportunity. He comes well recommended by several NBA coaches and scouts and we look forward to having him in London,” Lightning general manager Taylor Brown said.

The Lightning are hoping to have Mutombo in the lineup for the team’s Dec. 19 game against the Halifax Rainmen.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

2014 WCU Football Verbal Commit - Jackson McDonald

Jackson McDonald
Position:  Dual-Threat Quarterback

Hometown: Flowery Branch, GA
High School: Flowery Branch HS
Height: 6-0
Weight: 190
Rivals Ranking:  2 stars

Flowery Branch QB Jackson McDonald has given a verbal commitment to Western Carolina for football.   McDonald was flying under the radar, as he had committed to James Madison back in July 2013, but on 12-10-13 he decommitted from James Madison and gave a verbal to WCU.

Jackson also had an offer from Georgia Southern, and has drawn interest from App State, Georgia Tech  & Middle Tennessee.

All Area / All Region Quarterback
2012 MVP: Jackson McDonald, Flowery Branch
17 Passing TD's
18 Rushing TD's
40 Time - 4.48
Vertical - 33"
Bench - 315 lbs. S
quat - 455 lbs.
Clean - 250 lbs.

From Twitter:

I am now a Catamount and will be for the next 4 years. Cullowhee is my new home

Watch Jackson McDonald's highlights here

Join the conversation by leaving a comment below

Seasons Greetings from WCU

Moments To Remember from Western Carolina University on Vimeo.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

2014 WCU Football Prospect - Robbie Wallace

Robbie Wallace
Position: Safety

Hometown:  Covington, GA
High School:  Newton HS
Height:  6'0"
Weight:  205 lbs

Robbie Wallace has seen interest from Chattanooga, Georgia State, Middle Tennessee, Charlotte, Western Carolina, & Jacksonville State.   He has offers from  South Dakota State and Wingate

Senior season -
Solo Tackles: 40
Total Tackles: 54
Tackles Per Game: 5.4

View Robbie Wallace Highlights

Join the conversation by leaving a comment below

Monday, December 9, 2013

Scanning the SoCon - Week Six

Each week, our SoCon bloggers/message boarders (one representing each team) will vote on a Game of the Week, Power Rankings and Player of the Week. At least three will answer a series of questions on their team and things of interest around the SoCon.

Scanning the SoCon - Week Six

This is my submission to week six of Scanning the SoCon.  You will be able to read the entire consolidated article and see everyone's answers to this week's questions, just visit here and here.

Power Rankings
1) Davidson
2) Elon
3) Western Carolina
4) Wofford
5)  Georgia Southern
7) Appalachian State
8) Furman
9) Chattanooga
10) Samford
11) The Citadel

Player of the Week 
Jelani Hewitt, GSU

Game of the Week
Drexel at Davidson

Sum up your team since the last time you wrote.
The Catamounts are currently on a 3-game Division I nose dive at this time. The senior leadership Catamount fans were hoping for this season, hasn't materialized. Inconsistent defensive play, personal fouls, and a lack of offensive consistency in last season's leading scorers have resulted in 6 losses to date, five of which are classified as bad losses.

Long term, what are your thoughts on the SoCon's future?
I think the future is pretty bright for the SoCon long term. With the addition of the three new schools and the improvement of most of the remaining schools, the SoCon should be easily mid pack of the conferences in the next couple of seasons. Many of the schools have put renewed emphasis on basketball, and substantial improvement should be forth coming. Of the remaining schools, I think only the Citadel and Western Carolina are not moving in the right direction.

With the Big Ten-ACC Challenge fresh on your mind, what conference would you like to see the SoCon have a conference challenge against?
I think the logical geographic choice would be the Big South. Better overall RPI than the SoCon, teams all SoCon fans know, and could travel to most away games.

Join the conversation by leaving a comment below