WILLIAMSBURG, Va. -- Brian Mills scored a career-high 21 points and pulled down 11 rebounds to lead Mercer to a 71-66 victory over Western Carolina on Friday in the subregional round of the Legends Classic.
The Bears (2-3) shot 11 for 23 from the floor (47.8 percent) in the first half compared to 12 of 33 (36.4 percent) for Western Carolina. Mercer led 29-28 at halftime after a half that saw four ties and seven lead changes.
It was a different story in the second half as the Catamounts (2-3) lost their lead after a tip-in by Mills tied the score at 36 with 15:43 left to play. Western Carolina would not regain the lead the rest of the way.
Mike Williams led the Catamounts with 16 points.
A layup from Williams with 47 seconds remaining pulled Western Carolina to within a point, 66-65, but the Bears hit 5 of 6 free throws down the stretch to seal the win.
Jeff Smith added 18 for Mercer.