Dec. 12, 2012
LAKE CHARLES, La. - After a 23-minute game delay due to lighting issues, the Louisiana Tech (8-3) men's basketball team jumped out to a quick 11-0 lead, but McNeese State (5-3) battled back and used their hot-shooting down the stretch to defeat the Bulldogs 80-72 at the Lake Charles Civic Center on Wednesday night.
After the lighting issue was resolved, the Bulldogs lit up the scoreboard by going up 11-0 after a jumper by guard Cordarius Johnson.
"Our energy level for the first five minutes was off the charts," said head coach Michael White. "We jumped out to a significant lead. We were getting stops defensively. We were executing offensively, and then our mentality changed. We addressed it at halftime, and thought our energy level was a little bit better in the second half. Unfortunately though, [McNeese State] got into a good rhythm offensively and their kids were playing with confidence."
McNeese State then used a 9-0 run of their own, cutting the deficit to one, and would take their first lead of the game, 25-24, with 8:17 to go in the first stanza.
The lead changed hands five more times before halftime with the Bulldogs getting a jumper from forward J.L. Lewis, two of his team-high 14 points, to take a 37-36 lead into the locker room.
"[J.L. Lewis] has had a couple of good games in a row now," said White. "As of late he has been earning more minutes in practice and has been taking advantage for sure. He was our best frontcourt player tonight in this game."
LA Tech had as much as a seven-point advantage with 14:08 to go in the second half, but McNeese would regain the lead 61-60 with 7:46 to play in the game, and were able to extend their lead to seven points at the 1:55 mark.
The Bulldogs would then get back-to-back buckets to be down by only three, and on the following possession guard Kenneth Smith had a potential game-tying three-pointer go in and out.
As a team, the Bulldogs shot 43 percent from the field, but went only 4-of-21 from behind the arc.
Forward Michale Kyser added his first career double-double for LA Tech with 13 boards and 10 points to go along with four blocks.
The Cowboys were led by forward Desharick Guidry who recorded a game-high 18 points and also grabbed 11 rebounds for a double-double. McNeese had five total players score in double figures as they shot 53 percent for the game as a team.
LA Tech stays on the road for their last non-conference game before WAC play begins as they head to Little Rock, Ark. to take on the UALR Trojans on Monday, Dec. 17, at 7 p.m.
For complete coverage of LA Tech Men's Basketball, please follow @LATechHoops on Twitter or visit the official home of Louisiana Tech Athletics at www.LATechSports.com.