CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. — The backcourt trio of Stephen Curry, Max Paulhus Gosselin and Jason Richards combined for 71 points to lead the Davidson Wildcats to their fifth straight victory in a 92-80 triumph at SoCon foe Chattanooga Monday evening at The McKenzie Arena. The victory for Davidson was just their third against the Mocs on their home court in 18 tries as the Wildcats remained unbeaten in league play at 3-0 and improved to 9-3 overall. Chattanooga fell to 5-6 and 0-2 in conference play.
The freshman Curry led all players with 30 points by draining 11-of-21 from the floor, including 6-of-13 from long range. The shooting guard also grabbed 11 rebounds for his first career double-double.
Richards contributed 19 points, one shy of his career high, with 17 points and all three of his trifectas coming in the final 10 minutes. Entering the game second in the nation with 8.3 assists per game, the point guard dished out nine more, plus hauled in eight rebounds to nearly register a triple-double.
The surprising scoring outburst came from Paulhus Gosselin, who poured in a career-high 22 points, including 4-of-5 from behind the arc. The offensive output was a surprise because the sophomore was averaging just 5.1 points a game and had hit just three three-pointers all season.
Chattanooga held a two-point advantage at the break, 42-40, and doubled that following a Marcus Watts layup a couple minutes into the second half. But Curry drilled a three, and junior Thomas Sander dropped a trey in to tie the score at 50. Another three-pointer by Curry on the next possession gave Davidson an advantage it never relinquished.
The lead, however, remained between one and five points until Richards took over the majority of the scoring. His three-pointer with 9:33 to play, followed by a Curry trey, put the Wildcats up seven, 67-60. Then with 6:42 on the clock, Richards’ three-point play boosted the lead to 11 at 75-64. Twice Keddric Mays dropped in three-pointers for the Mocs, only to have Richards answer with a long ball each time, maintaining the 11-point bulge.
Chattanooga had one last gasp, cutting the deficit to three at 83-80 with 2:55 to play after a driving layup by Kevin Bridgewaters. Richards had the answer again, however, dropping in five of six from the charity stripe over the next minute of play, while the Mocs could not score another point.
The hot shooting of Paulhus Gosselin helped the Wildcats jump out to an early lead which reached as many as 10 in the opening stanza. Of Davidson’s first 25 points, 16 came from Paulhus Gosselin as he nailed his first four shots from downtown.
The Mocs battled back, taking one-point leads on three occasions before Mays canned a three-pointer with 10 seconds left in the half for the 42-40 UTC lead at the intermission.
Three-point shooting dominated the game as Davidson hit 14-of-32 (.438) from beyond the arc and Chattanooga was even more accurate at 13-of-28 (.464). Inside the arc was another story as the Wildcats held the Mocs under 40 percent overall (27-of-68, .397) for the game while shooting 46.4 percent (32-of-69) themselves. Davidson topped 50 percent in the second half, hitting 8-of-14 threes (.471) and 18-of-34 overall (.529).