CARROLLTON, Ga. - Five West Georgia players scored in double-figures on Saturday afternoon at The Coliseum, including a double-double from senior guard Aren Ulmer, leading the Wolves to an 83-74 victory over Johnson C. Smith.
Ulmer was obviously in a giving mood to open up the holiday season, as his double-double came via 12 points and 10 assists in the contest. It was the first time that a West Georgia player has had a double-double with points-assists since December 6, 2015, when Iakeem Alston hit for 14 points and dished out 10 assists. For Ulmer, it was the fourth time that he has had double-digit assists in his career at UWG.
Senior Marquill Smith and freshman Jared Simmons paced the Wolves in the first half, combining for 24 of the Wolves' 43 points in the period, but it was from the three-point line where the Wolves were hitting in this one. Smith was 3-for-6 from beyond the arc in the first half en route to 16 points while Simmons was 2-for-5 for eight points in his first start at UWG.
The Wolves led by as many as eight points several times in the first half, including at 31-23 with 8:30 left in the half. Freshman Deng Nhial hit a free-throw at that point to push the advantage to eight, but JC Smith came roaring back with a 7-0 run over the next two minutes. West Georgia kept hitting shots, connecting on 53 percent from the floor in the opening half, heading into the locker room at the break with a 43-39 lead.
Coming out of the locker room, Smith scored the first seven points of the second half as the Wolves built an 11-point lead in the first two minutes of the period. The West Georgia advantage reached an apex at 17, as UWG led 66-49 with 12:10 left in the contest. Over the next six minutes, the Wolves went cold as the Golden Bulls went on a 17-2 run, cutting West Georgia's lead to 68-66 with 5:52 left in the game.
The Wolves responded with an 11-3 run, and with 1:24 left in the game, junior center Willie Barnes buried a pair of
Smith led all scorers with a season-high 30 points, marking the
West Georgia moves to 3-3 in non-conference play ahead of the 2018-19 Gulf South Conference opener next Thursday evening at Alabama Huntsville. Tipoff from Spragins Hall is set for 8:30 p.m.