SPARTANBURG — A furious second-half rally was not enough to make up for a disappointing first half, and The Citadel ended up a 99-89 loser at Wofford on Saturday night.
The Bulldogs gave up 52 points in the first half and scored 52 in the second, but lost its fifth straight game to slide to 10-17 overall and 3-11 in the Southern Conference.
“We can’t dig a 15-point hole and then start playing hard,” said Citadel coach Duggar Baucom, whose team trailed by 52-37 at the break. “Play hard when it’s even.
“We certainly played like warriors in the second half. We could win if we play like that all the time. That’s what is so frustrating.”
Spencer Collins scored 23 points to lead Wofford (14-13, 10-4), which shot 58 percent from the field and owned an 18-point lead in the second half.
The Bulldogs, led by 23 points from Derrick Henry, whittled that lead down to 80-74 with 7:40 left in the game. But The Citadel could get no closer in the final minutes of a game that featured four technical fouls, 50 personal fouls and 59 free throws.
Wofford went 30 of 38 from the foul line to 15 of 21 for The Citadel.
“It’s tough to spot a team 15 points from the free-throw line,” Baucom said. “It’s hard to overcome that. But the kids played through the calls and through the foul trouble.”
Warren Sledge and Brian White each scored 13 points for the Bulldogs, who were 8 of 26 from 3-point range.
“The guys had a lot of fight tonight,” Baucom said. “They can grow from this, for sure.”
The Citadel is at home Thursday against East Tennessee State.