Jan. 29, 2009
RUSTON -- Hawaii junior Petras Balocka tipped the game-winning basket in with .2 seconds on the clock to give the Warriors a 54-53 win over the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs (8-13; 2-6 WAC) Thursday night in the Thomas Assembly Center.
"When we play tough and when we are committed, we do a lot of good things," Tech head coach Kerry Rupp said. "At the end of the day, with the amount of turnovers we had and since we only had five assists, our ball-handling really hurt us tonight."
Hawaii (10-10; 2-6 WAC) led by as many as seven in the second half before junior David Jackson hit a pair of free throws to tie the game at 50-50 with 26 seconds remaining in the game. After Hawaii knocked down a pair of free throws, junior Jamel Guyton hit his fourth three-pointer of the night at the :24 to give Tech its final lead of the game before Balocka's tip-in.
The Bulldog started strong with a 13-2 run over first five minutes of play. Hawaii, however, climbed back in, and Tech only led 35-30 at halftime.
Tech struggled to score early in the second half, and Hawaii used a 7-0 run to take a 37-35 lead with over 14 minutes to play.
Guyton led the Bulldogs with 14 points and six rebounds, while junior Kyle Gibson finished with 13 points. Junior Magnum Rolle rounded out Tech's double-digit scorers with 10 points and seven rebounds on the night.
Roderick Flemings' 17 points led Hawaii.
"We need to battle, continue to fight and toughen up after a loss such as this one," Rupp added. "When we are aggressive and when we battle, we are better."
The Bulldogs remain at home Saturday, Jan. 31, at 2 p.m. to take on the San Jose State Spartans. The game will be broadcast live on KXKZ 107.5 FM locally with a live audio feed also available at www.z1075fm.com.