Chattanooga 81, Appalachian St. 69

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. -- Omar Wattad scored 21 points to help Chattanooga post an 81-69 comeback victory over Appalachian State in the Southern Conference opener on Thursday night.

The Mocs (3-5, 1-0) trailed 43-38 with 16:42 left to play, but a 24-7 run gave Chattanooga a 12-point lead with less than 11 minutes remaining. Wattad scored 11 points on 3 3s and two free throws during the run.

The Mountaineers (2-3, 0-1) led 36-32 at halftime after scoring 12 points off of eight Chattanooga turnovers. Donald Sims scored 16 of his game-high 28 points in the opening half to help Appalachian State build its four-point halftime advantage.

Chattanooga came out in the second half and shot 16 for 31 from the floor (51.6 percent), including Wattad's 15 second-half points, and held an 18-6 scoring advantage in the paint.

Omar Carter scored 14 points and had 11 rebounds in the loss for Appalachian State.