Photo by Logan Stapleton
By Jackson Sparks, Sports Editor —
The Chattanooga Mocs men’s basketball team currently sits at 7-0, its best start to a campaign since 1974.
After jumping out to a 5-0 start, redshirt senior David Jean-Baptiste entered the transfer portal. With their leading scorer departing, the Mocs now carry a mere eight scholarship players, and will rely on other guys to carry the load.
Much of that job is expected to be passed on to Mocs sophomore and Wright State transfer Malachi Smith.
As it sits today, Smith leads the team in points (15.6,) rebounds (11.1,) assists (4.0,) steals (1.7,) and free throw percentage (85.7.)
Since Jean-Batiste’s surprising decision, the Mocs have won two straight games including late-game heroics in their latest matchup with UNC-Ashville.
With a touch over 20 seconds remaining, down 66-63, the Mocs battled back to secure a victory after sinking four free-throws and connecting on a layup down the stretch.
Chattanooga has found many different ways to win. They’ve won by blowing teams out, coming back to steal a victory, and 3-point barrages.
As Chattanooga continues to find its identity, the 7-0 UAB Blazers await in a bout down south in Birmingham. The two teams are in a three-way-tie for the most victories in D-1 basketball.
With the battle of undefeateds set to take place Saturday afternoon, the Mocs must continue to get production from the top to the bottom of the line-up before SoCon play begins.