GREENVILLE, S.C. -- Trey Sumler scored 24 points and Tom Tankelewicz made five 3-pointers on his way to 17 points as Western Carolina beat Furman 79-65 Wednesday in the Southern Conference opener for both teams.
Sumler, who entered the game averaging 18 points, was 7-of-15 shooting, dished out seven assists and grabbed seven boards for the Catamounts (3-4), who won the rebounding battle 40-32.
Furman led majority of the first half until Sumler's jumper game Western Carolina its first lead of the game, 20-18, with 3:45 left. The Catamounts closed the half on a 7-3 run to take a 27-21 lead into the break.
The Paladins (2-4) cut the deficit to 37-36 after intermission, but the Catamounts used another run, this time 22-8, to pull away. Western Carolina led by as much as 15, 59-44, in the second half.
Colin Reddick led Furman with 15 points, nine rebounds and three blocks.
Colorado State graduate transfer John Gillon has chosen Syracuse, giving the Orange a potential starter at point guard entering the 2016-17 season.
DeSean Murray, who averaged 20.2 points as a sophomore at Presbyterian, will transfer to Auburn to play for coach Bruce Pearl.
Former Kentucky guard Ed Davender, the only Wildcat with at least 1,500 points and 400 assists, has died. He was 49.