Dec. 3, 2012
RUSTON - To keep their seven-game winning streak alive, the Louisiana Tech (7-1) men's basketball team will have to defeat Northwestern State (3-3), one of the longest rivals in program history, in Natchitoches, La. on Tuesday night at 7:30 p.m. inside Prather Coliseum.
Despite having eight games in the month of November, the most ever by a LA Tech team, the `Dogs managed to reel off seven wins that came in a span of 17 days.
After opening the season averaging 67.5 points per game while shooting 39.4 percent from the field, the Bulldog offense has exploded in their last two games versus Southeastern Louisiana and Georgia State, averaging 92.5 points per game on 54.9 percent shooting.
"We have finally started to click a bit offensively, and our kids continue to strive for daily improvement," said head coach Michael White. "With the workload that was presented to them in November, they definitely responded well."
Guard Raheem Appleby continues to pave the way for the LA Tech offense, leading the team in scoring with 20.9 per game, including a career performance last game in Atlanta versus the Panthers when he racked up 34 points on 14-of-19 shooting.
Guard Cordarius Johnson continues his hot shooting as well, averaging 14.6 points per game while shooting an astounding 51 percent from the field and 47 percent from three-point range.
The offense may have to keep up their hot shooting going against an NSU squad who puts a ton of points on the board, so far averaging 84.3 points per game.
"Northwestern State is one of the best teams we've played thus far and winning at their place will be a tall task," said White. "They've played three BCS teams, and had chances to beat two of them. They are talented, deep and very well coached."
Well-coached they are as former Bulldog basketball great and LA Tech Hall of Famer Mike McConathy enters his 14th season as head coach of the Demons.
Our of the 140 games played between these two intrastate schools, last year's matchup may have been one of the best as LA Tech used an Appleby three-point buzzer beater to take the dramatic win in double overtime, 94-93.
This year, NSU boasts four different players scor¬ing in double figures, led by forward DeQuan Hicks who has not started a game this season but is the team's leading scorer averaging 15.7 per game.
The matchup will be broadcast live on the LA Tech Sports Network, including KXKZ 107.5 FM (Ruston), KJVC 92.7 (Mansfield) and KTKC 92.9 (Springhill) with the pregame show beginning at 7:00 p.m. The "voice of the Bulldogs" Dave Nitz will do the play-by-play while Jack Thigpen will provide analysis. Fans can also access live audio of the game via the Internet by subscribing to LA Tech All-Access at www.LATechSports.com.
Twitter users can also receive live in-game updates by following @LATechHoops.