I-20 Showdown goes to the Bulldogs in 68-52 Win
Nov. 24, 2012
RUSTON - A 21-0 run in the second half and a 23-point performance by guard Cordarius Johnson sparked a 68-52 victory for Louisiana Tech (5-1) over I-20 neighbor Louisiana-Monroe (0-2) Saturday night inside the Thomas Assembly Center.
The victory was the fifth straight for the Bulldogs on the early season and also the fifth straight over the Warhawks to increase the all-time series lead over ULM in the fifth oldest rivalry, 51-36.
Even though the game ended in a double-digit win for LA Tech, the game was a dogfight in the early going with the score knotted up 27-27 with less than three minutes to play in the first half. However, the Bulldogs would go on a 9-1 run before halftime ignited by one of Johnson's five three-pointers on the night to take an eight-point lead.
The defensive intensity amped up in the second half as the `Dogs went on a 21-0 run, holding the Warhawks scoreless for almost seven minutes to build their largest lead at 20.
"I thought some of our inefficiency had a lot to do with ULM and how well they played defensively, especially in their zone," said head coach Michael White. "I thought it was really good and bothered us at times. I thought we settled in finally. Cordarius Johnson made some shots to get us going. We came out with better intensity in the second half and definitely defended better in the second half."
Johnson had the hot hand for the Bulldogs on offense and defense, going 8-for-11 from the field for a matched career-high scoring effort. His five three-pointers was also a career-high, and went with his team-high eight rebounds.
"[Cordarius Johnson] was really good tonight," said White. "He's a talented kid that has learned how to become a really good defender. He's playing with more intensity and rebounding the ball better."
Raheem Appleby also added 18 points for the Bulldogs, five of those coming from the free-throw line where the Bulldogs went 17-of-25.
Louisiana-Monroe was led by Trent Mackey who totaled 17 points.
The result also became the 22nd straight victory in non-conference home games inside the Thomas Assembly Center for LA Tech, a streak that dates back to December of 2007.
The Bulldogs will go for No. 23 when they face Southeastern Louisiana on Wednesday, Nov. 28 at 7 p.m.
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