Streaky Samford Shooting Leads to First SoCon Loss of Season versus Furman 83-73

Samford’s quest to continue its perfect Southern Conference record fell short Thursday, as a string of poor shooting stretches led to a 83-73 loss to Furman.

During the first half, Samford (11-5, 2-1 SoCon) started strong offensively while holding the lead for 13 minutes in the early goings. With a few minutes remaining though, the Bulldogs suddenly allowed Furman (10-6, 3-0 SoCon) to go on a 12-2 run in the last 3:15 of the half and let them take a 38-33 lead into halftime.

All of this came despite the fact Samford had a seven point run of their own during the time before Furman’s swing, foreshadowing what would be a streaky night in separate directions for each team.

The second and last stretch of lackluster scoring put the nail in the coffin for Samford, as the Paladins held their opponent to 2-of-9 shooting in the final five minutes of the game while they went on a 14-0 run.

Furman’s Kris Acox led all players with 19 points on 9-of-15 shooting, representing one of four players (John Davis, Devin Sibley and Daniel Fowler) to score in double-digits for the Paladins. All of that was made possible by the team’s passing, which consisted of 22 assists and looked much cleaner than Samford despite the team’s 14 turnovers.

Samford’s streaky shooting was the biggest culprit for them in the defeat, as it took away any momentum they could get. Shooting 41 percent from the field in the first half, even a increase to 55 percent shooting in the following half was not enough to change their fortunes.

While Wyatt Walker and Christen Cunningham had 18 and 15 points respectively, the Bulldogs success was fleeting as they became more sloppy with their passes and seemed like they were just relying to force things during their scoring droughts.

With Furman and East Tennessee State now the lone undefeated teams in SoCon conference play, Samford will have to regroup as they prepare to face Wofford on Saturday. Every game will be important to all SoCon teams from this point, so losses down the stretch will hurt any tournament hopes for the Bulldogs.

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