Carter, Matthews Lead UWF to Dominant Win

Ben Johnson, Writer

On Saturday at the UWF Field House, Wendell Matthews and Brett Carter, Jr. led the West Florida Argos (4-6, 4-6 GSC) to an 88-71 win over the Shorter Hawks (1-8, 1-8 GSC). 

Carter, Jr. was the lead scorer with 18 points with 12 of those points coming from 3-point range, and Matthews was close behind scoring 17 points.

“My teammates did a great job finding me [open],” Carter, Jr. said. “Kendall and Tarik did a good job finding me and I was able to knock [shots] down.” 

Wendell drew fouls all night, scoring 11 of his 17 points from the free throw line.

“I was poundin’ it just like my coach said,” Wendell said. “I tried to get open shots, and if I couldn’t – just get to the free throw line.”

UWF started the game by scoring 14 unanswered points and playing solid defensively, only allowing Shorter to score 11 points in the first 10 minutes.

West Florida illustrated its dominance both offensively and defensively, scoring 53 points while only allowing 33 by halftime. 

Coach Jeff Burkhamer praised his players scoring ability early on in the first half.

“Wendell was terrific early in the game,” Burkhamer said. “Brett comes off the bench and shoots the ball terrific.”

After halftime, the Argos continued their scoring onslaught by taking a commanding 37-point lead that helped solidify UWF’s win. 

However, after Burkhamer decided to rest most of the starters late in the game, the Hawks managed a small comeback to lighten the burden of their loss.

Shorter never had the lead over UWF. The closest the Hawks came to tying West Florida was with seven minutes and thirteen seconds left in the first half, cutting the lead to five points.

UWF enjoyed their two-game home stand against shorter after a long, winless streak. 

The Argos broke their five-game winless streak on Friday, beating Shorter 101-65, and finished the weekend with this comfortable win that may give UWF a momentum boost when they play West Georgia next week. 

“This weekend was terrific for us,” Burkhamer said. “Hopefully, we take some of this momentum on the road in an important series at West Georgia.”

West Florida will look to take this weekend’s momentum and beat West Georgia after losing to the Wolves at home earlier in the season 76-84.

UWF’s next game is against West Georgia on Feb. 5 at 6 p.m. in Carrollton, Ga.