The Chattanooga Mocs lost 74-63 at Eastern Kentucky Tuesday night. Z. Mason (Nashville, Tenn.) shone despite the loss with 23 points, 12 rebounds and five blocks.
Mason grabbed his 600th rebound during the second half. He is just the third Moc of DI era to post 1,000 points and 600 rebounds in his career joining Nicchaeus Doaks (2006-09) and Lance Fulse (1985-88).
Glenn Cosey led four Colonels in double digits with 19 points. Corey Walden had 16 points, five rebounds and four steals, while Marcus Lewis chipped in 13 points and three steals. Orlando Williams added 10 points off the bench.
Turnovers doomed the Mocs this night. The squad had a season-high 24 with many coming on unforced errors. EKU scored 25 of its 74 points off turnovers and took 26 more shots (63-37) than its visitors.
“The story of the game was that we just turned the ball over too much,” Head Coach Will Wade said. “They got 63 shots and we got 37 shots. We shot pretty well, but we couldn’t get enough shots because of turnovers.
“The way they play causes turnovers,” Wade continued. “We didn’t handle that very well. They did a nice job and give credit to them. Now we have to move on and get ready for Samford.”
Gee McGhee’s (Baton Rouge, La.) free throw with 11:35 to play made it a three-point contest, 48-45, in favor of the home team. The Colonels scored on three straight possessions as Cosey’s trey at 10:18 pushed the margin to 10, 55-45.
EKU continued its onslaught. Its lead rose to 14 twice. The second came on a Cosey free throw with 3:51 to go for a 69-55 advantage.
The Mocs did not quit. Eric Robertson (Huntsville, Ala.) hit a three-pointer followed by a Casey Jones (New Orleans, La.) jumper to get the lead back to 10, 70-60. After a defensive stop, Martynas Bareika (Kedainiai, Lithuania) drained a three-pointer with 2:05 left cutting it to seven, 70-63. That was as close as it would get.
Chattanooga won the battle of the boards by 10, 35-25, led by Mason’s 12. It shot 54.1 percent from the field making 20 of its 37 shots. That’s the fewest shot attempts since November 23, 2007 against No. 19 Southern Illinois in Anaheim, Calif.
It was a see-saw game early with eight ties and nine lead changes in the first half. EKU led 29-20 at 8:07 on a Cosey layup when Chattanooga made its move. Jones gave his squad its last lead, 36-35, at 3:16 on a play in the paint. It capped a 17-5 run. The Colonels scored seven unanswered points to lead 42-36 at the break.
The Mocs remain on the road this weekend traveling to Birmingham, Ala., to square off with Samford. Game time is 7 p.m., Eastern. The games can be listened to live on ESPN 105.1 FM the Zone in the Scenic City, or go to the men’s basketball schedule page on GoMocs.com for links to video (PPV), audio (free) and live stats.