Junior forward Chris Flemmings paced five players in double figures with 18 points as UNCW stayed perfect in 2015-16 with a convincing 94-73 victory over East Tennessee State Saturday in a non-conference men’s basketball game at the Freedom Hall Civic Center.
The Seahawks, making their road debut in 2015-16, bolted out of the gate early and thoroughly dominated the Bucs to become the first UNCW team since the 1995 club to start the season at 4-0.
“I’m proud of our guys today and I’m happy for these young men,” said Kevin Keatts, UNCW’s second-year head coach. “We just took what the defense gave us. Since I’ve been coaching here, this is probably the hardest we’ve played in the first half. We got transition buckets, our press was very effective and our energy was great in the first half.”
Flemmings drained 8-of-13 field goal attempts in just 24 minutes to anchor UNCW’s balanced attack. Freshman guard C.J. Bryce added 14 points, freshman forward Devontae Cook scored 13, sophomore playmaker Jordon Talley contributed 12 and sophomore forward Marcus Bryan collected 10 as 11 Seahawks reached the scoring column.
In the first meeting between the two teams since 2003, the Seahawks jumped on the Bucs quickly behind hot shooting and balanced scoring to build a 48-37 lead at the break. UNCW poured it on down the stretch, leading by as many as 28 points to secure their first road win of the new campaign.
The Seahawks shot a season-high 58.6 percent from the floor on the day, converting 41-of-70 field goals, including 66.7 percent in the second half.
UNCW returns home to entertain NCAA Division II Coker on Wednesday in a 7 p.m. tip-off at Trask Coliseum. It will be UNCW’s last home game before the Christmas holiday.