LA Tech Hosts UTA as part of Basketball Hall of Fame Invitational
Nov. 16, 2015
RUSTON – Old conference foes will meet inside the Thomas Assembly Center on Tuesday night as Louisiana Tech hosts UT Arlington as part of the 2015 Basketball Hall of Fame Invitational with tipoff set for 6:30 p.m.
The multi-team event also features three other teams -- Grambling State, Ohio State and Memphis – whom the Bulldogs will also play in the non-conference.
LA Tech (1-0) and UTA (1-0) were travel partners as recently as the 2012-13 season in the Western Athletic Conference. They were also both league mates in the Southland Conference from 1972-86.
To open the season, the Bulldogs may have had some early jitters up only five points on Millsaps College eight minutes into the game. The team settled in nicely after that though by going on a 26-0 run to help produce a 62-point route, the fifth largest margin of victory in program history.
LA Tech ended up shooting 37-of-74 from the field for 50 percent. On defense, they forced 21 turnovers while only allowing 33 points.
“I thought [the newcomers] settled in nicely,” head coach Eric Konkol said. “Branden Sheppard played extended minutes and attacked the glass well. Derric Jean showed his athleticism in the open court, making some nice shots. Jy’lan Washington and Da’Shawn Robinson both showed they can do some things on both ends of the floor. It was a good night overall for the new guys.”
UT Arlington opened the regular season with a 77-72 home victory over Fordham. The Mavericks led by 17 points with 8:02 left to play in the game, but the Rams fought back to pull to within one with 1:12 to go.
UTA was able to tack on four free throws and hold Fordham to just one field goal attempt to pull out the five-point victory. Faith Pope came off the bench to score a team-high 14 points on 5-of-6 shooting.
“We know that they are big and physical,” Konkol said. “They are very well coached. They are going to come in here motivated to play a great game. We need to be ready to guard all of their actions, as well as play a great game offensively. They are going to be a very good team in their league. It is a good game on our schedule and we are excited to play them.”
LA Tech leads the overall series, 24-8, having won the last six meetings in Ruston and 10 of the last 11 overall meetings. The last time these two teams squared off was on Feb. 2, 2013 when the ‘Dogs won by a score of 64-51 in a WAC showdown.
Free Johnny's pizza will be available to the first 200 students. There will also be schedule magnets handed out to the first 500 fans in attendance.
Fans can access live video and audio of the game via the Internet by subscribing to LA Tech All-Access at LATechSports.com. The contest can be heard live on the LA Tech Sports Network on KXKZ 107.5 FM (Ruston), KRMD 1340 AM (Shreveport), KJVC 92.7 (Mansfield) and KTKC 92.9 FM (Springhill). The “Voice of the Bulldogs” Dave Nitz will call the play-by-play and Jack Thigpen will provide analysis.
Twitter users can also receive live in-game updates by following @LATechHoops.
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