Bulldogs Take Down ULM 73-71

Sophomore Cordarius Johnson scored 12 of his 14 points from beyond the arc
 
Sophomore Cordarius Johnson scored 12 of his 14 points from beyond the arc
 

Dec. 4, 2011

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MONROE, La. - The Louisiana Tech men's basketball team (3-4) escaped with a 73-71 victory over I-20 foe Louisiana Monroe (1-7) 73-71 in front of a crowd of 2,013 as a half-court shot from the Warhawks hit off the back of the rim at the buzzer as freshman guard Raheem Appleby (Jacksonville, Ark.) scored a game-high 19 points for the Bulldogs.

The victory extended Tech's winning streak over the Warhawks to four straight with the two-point margin of victory being the closest in the series since a 63-61 Bulldog victory on Jan. 10, 1986.

In the first half neither team could take a lead larger than three for the first 10 minutes until Tech went on a 10-0 run for the next 2:39 started by Appleby with five straight points.

The Warhawks responded with a 6-0 run of their own to cut the Bulldogs' lead to 25-21 before a tip-in from junior forward J.L. Lewis (Gonzales, La.) ended Tech's scoreless streak.

The Bulldogs was able to stretch their lead to nine, 32-23, with 4:09 left in the period after two free throws from junior guard Brandon Gibson (Marianna, Fla.). Tech was held scoreless the rest of the half as ULM cut the Bulldogs' advantage to 32-29 after the first 20 minutes of action.

The second half saw Tech's lead shrink to 36-35 at the 17:25 mark before the Bulldogs went on an 8-2 run over the next 3:27 with four points coming from senior forward Romario Souza (Mias Gerias, Brazil).

The Warhawks came back to take the lead 45-44 with 11 minutes remaining in the period before a hook-shot by freshman forward Michale Kyser (Lancaster, Texas) and a jumper from Appleby in a 20 seconds span gave Tech a three-point advantage.

A jumper from sophomore Cordarius Johnson (Coushatta, La.) stretched the Bulldog lead to five before ULM fought back to take a 57-56 advantage with 4:11 left to play.

Tech responded with a 9-0 run over the next 1:56 to take a 65-57 lead with six points coming from Johnson on two three-pointers.

With the Bulldogs up by six with just over 30 seconds left on the clock, ULM scored five of the final six points of the game as Marcelis Hansberry's half-court shot at the buzzer hit off the rim to give Tech the victory.

Johnson and Lewis added 14 and 10 points, respectively, while senior guard Trevor Gaskins (Alpharetta, Ga.) and sophomore guard Kenyon McNeail (Conway, Ark.) had four assists apiece. Gaskins, Lewis, McNeail and Souza led Tech with four rebounds apiece.

For the game the Bulldogs went 26-of-61 (42.6%) including 15-of-29 (51.7%) in the second half and went 13-for-18 (72.2%) from the free throw line.

The Warhawks were led by Fred Brown with 17 points while Charles Winborne and Christian Bibi Ndongo added 15 and 10, respectively. Fabio Ribeiro had a game-high eight boards while Winborne dished out a game-best five assists.

ULM shot 40 percent (23-57) from the field including 35 percent (6-17) from behind the arc. At the free throw line, the Warhawks made 19-of-23 attempts.

Tech returns to play at the Thomas Assembly Center for the first time in nearly a month as the Bulldogs host Northwestern State at 7 p.m. Tuesday night.