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TOP 25
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  1. CitadelGROSELLE21
  2. W CarolinaMUTOMBO21
U.S. Cellular CenterAsheville, NC

ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) -- Harouna Mutombo scored 21 points and Trey Sumler had 18 points and six assists as Western Carolina defeated The Citadel 68-56 Friday in the first round of the Southern Conference tournament.

The Catamounts (15-17), who will play Wofford in Saturday's quarterfinals, never trailed after Mutombo's 3-pointer gave them a 3-2 lead. Seven of their eight first-half baskets came from long range as the third seed in the league's North Division took a 24-17 lead into intermission.

The Bulldogs (6-24), seeded sixth in the South Division, twice got within five in the second half. A three-point play by Mike Groselle, who finished with 21 points, made it 37-32 with 13:20 left, but Brandon Boggs, Keaton Cole and Sumler hit 3-pointers on Western Carolina's next three possessions to boost its lead to 46-34.

Cole finished with 14 points.

Each team shot 65.2 percent (15 of 23) in the second half.

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