Vols rally from 11-point deficit to beat UNC Asheville, 72-68

Tennessee's Kenny Hall, left, and Cameron Tatum celebrate after their win against UNC Asheville, 72-68 at Thompson-Boling Arena on Tuesday, December 20, 2011.

(SAUL YOUNG/NEWS SENTINEL)

Photo by Saul Young, Saul Young

Tennessee's Kenny Hall, left, and Cameron Tatum celebrate after their win against UNC Asheville, 72-68 at Thompson-Boling Arena on Tuesday, December 20, 2011. (SAUL YOUNG/NEWS SENTINEL)

Cameron Tatum on how Cuonzo Martin maintained team's confidence

Finally, Tennessee toughed out a win.

The Vols snapped the program’s first four-game losing streak in almost seven years with Tuesday night’s 72-68 victory over defending Big South Conference champion UNC Asheville at Thompson-Boling Arena.

Tennessee (4-6) showed the type of resolve against the Bulldogs (6-5) that first-year coach Cuonzo Martin has been preaching and angling for.

“It was the first time I’ve really seen it all year where guys really got after it,’’ said Martin, whose team was 0-6 this season in games decided by 10 points or less heading into the night. “For some reason our guys get somewhat consumed with how they look instead of just playing hard and getting after it, getting down and dirty; that’s the style I’m accustomed to.’’

The Vols trailed by 11 points in the first half and were down by 10 with 15:40 left to play before senior Cameron Tatum heated up during a pivotal 11-2 run with less than 10 minutes remaining before an announced crowd of 15,324.

“I didn’t even know we were winning when I hit that (go-ahead) shot,’’ said Tatum, referring to his 3-pointer with 7:41 left that capped the run and gave the Vols a 56-55 lead, their first advantage since going up 2-0 off the opening tip. “It was just doing whatever it takes to win and being hungry. We couldn’t go down five straight games.’’

UT senior Renaldo Woolridge matched his career high with 17 points, tying Tatum for the team’s scoring honors. Kenny Hall had 12 points and a career-high three blocked shots.

Jeronne Maymon had 10 points and 13 rebounds to record his first double-double since his monster 32-point, 20-rebound effort in the Vols’ 99-97 double-overtime loss to Memphis in the EA Sports Maui Invitational on Nov. 22.

“I just told the team at the half, ‘we can’t lose this game,’ ” said Maymon, who played only five minutes in the first half after picking up his second foul at the 15:33 mark. “I said, ‘We gotta pick it up, man, we’ve worked too hard, and we’re not losing this game.’ ”

Maymon’s teammates backed up those words, at one point, stopping Asheville from scoring on seven consecutive possessions in the second half.

Senior J.P. Primm led the Bulldogs with 25 points but missed a critical free throw with 23.5 seconds left that would have tied the game.

UT point guard Trae Golden, playing with a broken nose suffered in Friday’s practice, was fouled at the other end and hit two free throws to put the Vols up 71-68 with 16.6 seconds left.

Bulldogs guard Matt Dickey missed a forced 3-pointer, and Skylar McBee was fouled on the ensuing possession and split a pair of free throws with 8.1 seconds left to ice the win.

While Tatum provided steady scoring in the second half, getting 14 of his points over the final 20 minutes, Woolridge entered with Maymon in foul trouble and scored 13 points in the first half.

“I’ve had a good week of practice, and really, it was just letting it fly tonight,’’ said Woolridge, whose previous career high was 14 points, most recently in the Vols’ 76-68 win over No. 1 Kansas on Jan. 10, 2010. “Coach Martin told me if I’m open to shoot it.’’

Tatum, like Woolridge, broke from a slump, having hit only one of 12 shots in the two previous games.

“The only thing that changed was Coach Martin called me one night and said, ‘don’t worry about your shot, it will come,’ ” Martin said. “Him telling me that gave me the confidence I needed.’’

The Vols bring their newfound momentum and confidence back to the court at 7 p.m. on Friday at Thompson-Boling Arena in a non-televised game against East Tennessee State (5-5).

Mike Griffith covers Tennessee men’s basketball. Follow him at http://twitter.com/MikeGriffith32

Get Copyright Permissions © 2011, Knoxville News Sentinel Co.
Want to use this article? Click here for options!

© 2011 govolsxtra.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • Discuss
  • Print

Related Topics

Related Stories

Comments » 111

iowavol writes:

Unbelievable coverage by this website. Last tweet from Griffith occurred with over 7 minutes left in the game. No where on this site is a link to internet based coverage. Even the mention of Sports South in a previous article wasn't a hyper link. No wonder our sports programs are becoming mediocre, they have a great role model in the a professional newspaper. ARGH.

iowavol writes:

By the way, how was the game? I'm guessing less than impressive except for Hall and Woolridge.

tgiles1944#654264 writes:

6'10" - 6'11" - 7'0"
Any questions?

hcjournals#206623 writes:

We needed a win. We got one...Good.

Ironcity writes:

Not sure what to think of this team. We played not to loose at the end and luckily they missed a couple of FT. We need to attack if they are going to press and we break it clean. Team needs some confidence. Lets hope they get 3 more wins before 2012 and a new player in two weeks.

I_Bleed_Orng writes:

Saw the second half of the game online at espn.com. I was happy to see them fight back and overcome an 11 point deficit to win the game.

But before we get ahead of ourselves. This was a hard fought win against UNC Asheville.

Let the comparisons to the Vandy football win begin.

midnite__VOL writes:

SWIPERBOY!!!

tennrich1 writes:

As a true Vol fan it pains me to say but its hard to watch this team....I do think however in time we can be a pretty good team....just need Maymon, Golden and McRae to play at a high level EVERY night....Don't think we have seen that yet...

mocsandvolsfan writes:

Ooooookay! is alright. nice one. not bad. fine. that was ones for the books.it's Miller time.my, my, my! goodness sakes. good gracious. oh yeah. yes. made it. that's that. it'll do. well. lookin' alright. hmmm. boy howdy. okie dokie.

FORTKNOXVOL writes:

in response to iowavol:

Unbelievable coverage by this website. Last tweet from Griffith occurred with over 7 minutes left in the game. No where on this site is a link to internet based coverage. Even the mention of Sports South in a previous article wasn't a hyper link. No wonder our sports programs are becoming mediocre, they have a great role model in the a professional newspaper. ARGH.

If you want to listen to or sometimes watch a game not on TV try going to UTSPORTS.com, the official UT site. They have the official links to both the VOL Radio broadcast and ESPN3 if available. KNS, I don't believe has the authority to provide the links.

wildcatbasketball writes:

Nice win Vols!!! At home, against Asheville? By the way, Pearl was seen on his back deck tonight having a big time BBQ,,,,LOL...Long season ahead boys!!!

mocsandvolsfan writes:

in response to tennrich1:

As a true Vol fan it pains me to say but its hard to watch this team....I do think however in time we can be a pretty good team....just need Maymon, Golden and McRae to play at a high level EVERY night....Don't think we have seen that yet...

not sure to include Maymon. He was missing first half though.

rockypop writes:

Can't wait to see Vols' shooting percentage - especially that of Skylar McBee. Ugly. On TV at least, TBA looked and sounded like an empty hall - lots of echoes during the telecast. At the end of the game, I couldn't tell if the players' celebration was one of joy or relief. Had UNCA been able to convert free throws down the stretch, the outcome may have been different. Anyway, a much needed win against a competent opponent.

TopTenn writes:

Come on Stokes. We need you.

atributetoLombardiwasbanned writes:

in response to iowavol:

Unbelievable coverage by this website. Last tweet from Griffith occurred with over 7 minutes left in the game. No where on this site is a link to internet based coverage. Even the mention of Sports South in a previous article wasn't a hyper link. No wonder our sports programs are becoming mediocre, they have a great role model in the a professional newspaper. ARGH.

Hear the Vol from Iowa.
Hear the Vol from Iowa whine.
Whine Vol from Iowa, whine.

sly_stone99#434111 writes:

in response to TopTenn:

Come on Stokes. We need you.

We'll find out Thursday as he will be revealing his choice.

DarkGable writes:

Amazing. The couch potatoes are out finding something to ridicule. You couch potato experts crack me up. You can't shut your mouths and enjoy the win. You have to ridicule a team thats hasn't been together but a couple of months. Trae didnt do this, Maymon didnt do this in the first half, Skylar didnt do this. All the while you're sitting on your couch. Division I couch potatoes.

Flabbergasted writes:

in response to Ironcity:

Not sure what to think of this team. We played not to loose at the end and luckily they missed a couple of FT. We need to attack if they are going to press and we break it clean. Team needs some confidence. Lets hope they get 3 more wins before 2012 and a new player in two weeks.

FOR THE LOVE OF GOD WOULD YOU IGNORANT PEOPLE PLEASE LEARN THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN LOSE AND LOOSE??? IT'S DRIVING ME INSANE!!! A LOOSE BALL IS SPELLED L-O-O-S-E!!! TO LOSE A GAME IS L-O-S-E!! LOSER!!!! IT'S NOT THAT FRICKIN' DIFFICULT!!!

samvol writes:

good win vols...way to go renaldo....

Indian_Bill writes:

A win is a win and I will take it.
Now go lady vols.

jhayes0926#638474 writes:

A badly needed win. Wow, how ugly can it get. This reminds me of watching Ole Miss or Ms. State. It is just not interesting ball to watch. Hopefully, SEC play will be more fun to watch.

I think, in time, Richardson and Miller may be All-SEC caliber with a little more experience. There is some hope for next year. Hate to say it but this team will only be as good as Tatum plays.

wildcatbasketball writes:

in response to Flabbergasted:

FOR THE LOVE OF GOD WOULD YOU IGNORANT PEOPLE PLEASE LEARN THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN LOSE AND LOOSE??? IT'S DRIVING ME INSANE!!! A LOOSE BALL IS SPELLED L-O-O-S-E!!! TO LOSE A GAME IS L-O-S-E!! LOSER!!!! IT'S NOT THAT FRICKIN' DIFFICULT!!!

Tennessee English...NUFF said!!!

DarkGable writes:

in response to rockypop:

Can't wait to see Vols' shooting percentage - especially that of Skylar McBee. Ugly. On TV at least, TBA looked and sounded like an empty hall - lots of echoes during the telecast. At the end of the game, I couldn't tell if the players' celebration was one of joy or relief. Had UNCA been able to convert free throws down the stretch, the outcome may have been different. Anyway, a much needed win against a competent opponent.

You probably havent played ball since Upward Bound yet you criticize on the Div I level. Send Cuonzo your resume couch potato expert. Show em how its done. See ya at practice expert.

samvol writes:

in response to Flabbergasted:

FOR THE LOVE OF GOD WOULD YOU IGNORANT PEOPLE PLEASE LEARN THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN LOSE AND LOOSE??? IT'S DRIVING ME INSANE!!! A LOOSE BALL IS SPELLED L-O-O-S-E!!! TO LOSE A GAME IS L-O-S-E!! LOSER!!!! IT'S NOT THAT FRICKIN' DIFFICULT!!!

Lol

DarkGable writes:

in response to iowavol:

By the way, how was the game? I'm guessing less than impressive except for Hall and Woolridge.

Wow you're so good at coaching you dont have to watch the game. You should be a Div I couch potato coach also. I bet you could coach a team thats never been together and beat Duke and Pitt because you're just that good not watching the game. Expert.

vol75 writes:

in response to mocsandvolsfan:

Ooooookay! is alright. nice one. not bad. fine. that was ones for the books.it's Miller time.my, my, my! goodness sakes. good gracious. oh yeah. yes. made it. that's that. it'll do. well. lookin' alright. hmmm. boy howdy. okie dokie.

Prescription medication? Try a lower dose.

born2ride writes:

Good win over a mid-major.

Martin gets Stokes and keeps his job another year or two like Dooley.

RockyToptoNeyland writes:

If we are not 7-6 when we play memphis, i will be very disappointed

wildcatbasketball writes:

in response to BIVOLAR_BEAR:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Like.....more red-necks in East Tn than ANY part of the country!!! Promise ya that!!! I live here and can say not born here!!! But It is a great city to live in!!

wildcatbasketball writes:

in response to BIVOLAR_BEAR:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Let me say one more comment....." A dentist would have a field day" at Neyland Stadium, if they could afford one!!!

wildcatbasketball writes:

in response to wildcatbasketball:

Like.....more red-necks in East Tn than ANY part of the country!!! Promise ya that!!! I live here and can say not born here!!! But It is a great city to live in!!

Bivolar-bear---just so you know ..just because I am a wildcat fan DOES not mean I am from Kentucky!!! Thought I would point that out.

pcorange writes:

in response to Flabbergasted:

FOR THE LOVE OF GOD WOULD YOU IGNORANT PEOPLE PLEASE LEARN THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN LOSE AND LOOSE??? IT'S DRIVING ME INSANE!!! A LOOSE BALL IS SPELLED L-O-O-S-E!!! TO LOSE A GAME IS L-O-S-E!! LOSER!!!! IT'S NOT THAT FRICKIN' DIFFICULT!!!

Agree with you about the spelling. But, for heaven's sake, would you quit writing in all caps? That drives me insane.

pcorange writes:

in response to wildcatbasketball:

Bivolar-bear---just so you know ..just because I am a wildcat fan DOES not mean I am from Kentucky!!! Thought I would point that out.

That just means you don't even have a good excuse...

wildcatbasketball writes:

in response to pcorange:

Agree with you about the spelling. But, for heaven's sake, would you quit writing in all caps? That drives me insane.

As stated in a prior post!!! Tennesee English....What else do you expect?

givehim6 writes:

A win is a win, it is better then a L. Kind like a W over Montana right?

wagee12 writes:

in response to born2ride:

Good win over a mid-major.

Martin gets Stokes and keeps his job another year or two like Dooley.

Comparing football to basketball displays an obvious and total lack of ability to noodle out the huge difference in the two sports. Had to get a shot in at Coach Dooley though didn't ya there Einstein.

wildcatbasketball writes:

in response to pcorange:

That just means you don't even have a good excuse...

pcorange...I am glad you finally found out where the CAPS button was on your computer!!!

wildcatbasketball writes:

in response to wildcatbasketball:

pcorange...I am glad you finally found out where the CAPS button was on your computer!!!

LOL

usnavyvolfan__times_free_press_can_shove_it writes:

in response to wildcatbasketball:

Nice win Vols!!! At home, against Asheville? By the way, Pearl was seen on his back deck tonight having a big time BBQ,,,,LOL...Long season ahead boys!!!

How 'bout those Hoosiers!

usnavyvolfan__times_free_press_can_shove_it writes:

in response to wildcatbasketball:

LOL

Just like to point out this is twice you replied to your own post...I guess when you have no friends, you sort of have to make some up.

crutch1966 writes:

in response to Ironcity:

Not sure what to think of this team. We played not to loose at the end and luckily they missed a couple of FT. We need to attack if they are going to press and we break it clean. Team needs some confidence. Lets hope they get 3 more wins before 2012 and a new player in two weeks.

not to LOSE! not loose......

traderjoe writes:

Who's Bruce Pearl? We're killing 'em.

wildcatbasketball writes:

in response to usnavyvolfan__times_free_press_can_shove_it:

How 'bout those Hoosiers!

LOL.....At least it is a college that has history!!! Don't go there, please don't go there!!! You can seriously make that comment!!! WOW...take off the orange colored glasses!!! UK---10-1...UT 4-5 wins, hell, I forgot how many losses do they have already, and more to come, many more!!!!!! NIT bound, IF THAT!!! They will be 11th in the SEC AT BEST!!! Go ride your TRAIN, and wear your orange colored glasses!!

wildcatbasketball writes:

in response to BIVOLAR_BEAR:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Like!!! that is good Bob!!! laughing my butt off!! Let me say, This could be said about EVERY state in our great country!!!

Its_Goooood writes:

in response to BIVOLAR_BEAR:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

or is it losen up looser?

richvol writes:

Trae Golden was terrible...terrible. He almost cost UT the game with his careless ballhandling and poor shooting. Guess what...if your are not hitting anything you certainly don't throw up three point attempts like he does. If Martin doesn't recruit a satisfactory point guard we will never get better.

FWBVol writes:

in response to iowavol:

Unbelievable coverage by this website. Last tweet from Griffith occurred with over 7 minutes left in the game. No where on this site is a link to internet based coverage. Even the mention of Sports South in a previous article wasn't a hyper link. No wonder our sports programs are becoming mediocre, they have a great role model in the a professional newspaper. ARGH.

I can tell you from first-hand experience that reporters often have to juggle two or three things while covering games. Those of us in the media would like to tweet in a more timely manner, but there are often more pressing things to do.

LSG410EC83 writes:

Just got back from the game. Finally seeing spurts of playing together. Still a ways to go, but at least a step in the right direction. Woolridge showed his potential tonight, if he can only get consistant. Feel Wes is only going to get better. Saw how much of a vertical he had when attempting to block a three. His improvement will only push Golden. Only thing that kind of urks me. Just wish they would stop settling for the three instead of going for the paint. When they did start going underneath, the outside shot opened up more allowing much better shot selection. Still proud of the guys for not giving up when being down most of the game. Good game to show the boys that they can come back from behind. IT IS GREAT TO BE A TENNESSEE VOL. GO BIG ORANGE.

usnavyvolfan__times_free_press_can_shove_it writes:

in response to wildcatbasketball:

LOL.....At least it is a college that has history!!! Don't go there, please don't go there!!! You can seriously make that comment!!! WOW...take off the orange colored glasses!!! UK---10-1...UT 4-5 wins, hell, I forgot how many losses do they have already, and more to come, many more!!!!!! NIT bound, IF THAT!!! They will be 11th in the SEC AT BEST!!! Go ride your TRAIN, and wear your orange colored glasses!!

At least we'll KEEP all OUR wins! here's another word..."vacate"...better learn that one!

rockypop writes:

in response to DarkGable:

You probably havent played ball since Upward Bound yet you criticize on the Div I level. Send Cuonzo your resume couch potato expert. Show em how its done. See ya at practice expert.

Actually, Ace, I played ball at the University of Cincinnati back in the mid-60's when we were NC material. What's your story?

Want to participate in the conversation? Become a subscriber today. Subscribers can read and comment on any story, anytime. Non-subscribers will only be able to view comments on select stories.

Features