Jan. 14, 2011
RUSTON - Two similar teams take to Karl Malone Court on Saturday as the Louisiana Tech men's basketball team hosts Hawai'i at 7 p.m.
Tech (9-9) and Hawai'i (9-8) each started this season with a record of 7-2 and have currently lost five straight games. Both teams will be looking for their first Western Athletic Conference win as the Bulldogs are 0-4 and the Rainbow Warriors are 0-5.
Both teams also boast a solid record at home while struggling on the road. The Bulldogs are 5-2 at home and 2-7 on the road, while the `Bows are 8-3 at home and 0-4 away from the island. Hawai'i's road woes go deeper than that as they have lost 15 straight road games including its last 13 in WAC play.
Tech and UH have identical assist/turnover ratios (0.65) as the Bulldogs average 16.9 turnovers and 10.9 assists and the `Bows average 17.1 turnovers and 11.1 assists. However, Tech has improved on its miscues as of late with three-straight games under its 16.9 average.
Louisiana Tech is coming off a 79-74 loss to San Jose State on Thursday despite outscoring the Spartan bench 43-3 and hitting 12 three-pointers, the most since March 11, 2008 also against SJSU.
The Bulldog's three-point shooting has been one of the few bright spots for this young team as they lead the conference with 6.78 three-pointers per game. Freshman guard Lonnie Smith is shooting 40 percent from beyond the arc to lead the team and tie for eighth in the WAC. However, in conference games it has been a different freshman guard that has led the Bulldogs as Cordarius Johnson is shooting 50 percent in WAC contests.
Junior forward Olu Ashaolu is averaging a double-double in conference games with 12 points and 10 rebounds per game. Senior guard DeAndre Brown continues to be one of the top scorers in the conference averaging 16.4 points per game.
Hawai'i is led by junior guard Zane Johnson and his 15.1 points per game, the fifth best in the conference. The transfer from Arizona leads the WAC in free throw percentage (90.0) and three-pointers made (2.88). Bill Amis (12.6), Hiram Thompson (11.3) and Joston Thomas (10.9) all join Johnson in averaging double figures.
Louisiana Tech is 12-8 all-time against Hawai'i. Tech swept the two games last season with a 66-60 win in Honolulu and a 65-60 win in Ruston. The Bulldogs holds a 7-2 record versus the `Bows at home.
The contest can be heard live throughout the LA Tech Sports Network, including KXKZ 107.5 FM (Ruston) and KBYO 92.7 FM (Monroe/Farmerville).
LA Tech fans can also access the game via the internet by subscribing to LA Tech All-Access (log onto www.latechsports.com) as the audio and video will be streamed live.