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Thread: UL shooting woes lead to loss vs USM

  1. #1

    UL Basketball UL shooting woes lead to loss vs USM

      Louisiana's Ragin' Cajuns men's basketball team shot 17 percent in the first half and fell into a double-digit deficit they couldn't overcome in a 71-53 loss Tuesday evening to Southern Miss at Reed Green Coliseum in Hattiesburg, Miss.

    The loss snapped a two-game win streak for Louisiana (3-5). USM (7-1) completed the season series sweep - won 79-72 at the Cajundome in the season opener - and defeated the Ragin' Cajuns for the 15th time in the last 17 meetings.

    The Cajuns were led by Chris Gradnigo who recorded 16 points which was his season-high total. Tyren Johnson (14) and Ryan McCoy (12) joined him in double figures.

    The Golden Eagles received a game-high 18 points from Josimar Ayarza who was 6-of-7 from the floor and 5-o-5 at the charity stripe. Gary Flowers added 14 and a game-high 11 rebounds.

    USM started the second half with baskets on the first two touches, getting a three-point make from R.L. Horton at 19:28 and a Bolden putback at 18:31 to extend the lead to 34-17.

    Gradnigo dropped the UL deficit to 37-24 with a triple on the left elbow at 16:59, but the Golden Eagles responded with an Ayarza turnaround jumper and two freebies to return the advantage to 17 points by 16:06.

    Starting with a Lamar Roberson basket at 12:21, the Cajuns scored on three straight possessions to cut the USM lead down to 47-32 by 10:58.

    As they did earlier in the second stanza, the Golden Eagles had answers for each time the Cajuns crept within 14 or 15 points.

    Gradingo scored a layup that pulled UL within 14 points, 50-36 at 9:30. An Angel Johnson layup at 9:18 made it 52-36, and then after a UL missed field goal a pair of free throws by Flowers at 8:47 increased the lead to 18 points.

    UL was never able to get the lead lower than 18 points until a Johnson basket at 3:02 made it 63-46.

    The Cajuns did rebound to shoot 50 percent (15-of-30) in the second half to end the game at 33 percent (20-of-60).

    Making their first appearance at Reed Green Coliseum since January 2001, the Cajuns suffered their 11th straight defeat at the facility (4-14 all-time).

    A second-chance opportunity on the opening possession of the contest allowed McCoy to knock down a triple at 19:36. Flowers scored three baskets over the next three minutes to provide USM with a 6-point run.

    Turnovers and missed shots kept the score the same until Flowers made another basket at 13:58 for an 8-3 lead. Gradnigo ended UL's scoring drought with a pair of free throw makes 20 seconds later.

    Willie Lago recorded the Cajuns' first make since McCoy's triple - ending a string of 11 straight misses - with a triple at 11:40 that made it 12-8.

    McCoy hit the Cajuns' third triple of the half at 7:43 and after a block by Johnson on the other end drove to the hoop for a layup as he was fouled. He completed the three-point play to cut the deficit to 16-14.

    McCoy had a chance to tie the game on the next possession, but threw up an off-balanced shot which led to a long outlet pass for a slam dunk by Buchi Awaji that upped the Golden Eagles lead to four points at 6:37.

    Awaji's stuff kicked off a string of 13 unanswered points by USM that stretched the lead to 29-14 by the 1:48 mark.

    During USM's run the Cajuns missed 10 straight field goals - the second string of double-digit misses in the half. Louisiana finished 5-of-30 from the floor in the opening stanza which led to a season-low 17 points (previous was 23 at LSU).

    Louisiana will be back in action on Saturday, Dec. 19 in Beaumont, Texas, for a meeting with Lamar. Game time is set for 7:05 p.m., at the Montagne Center.

    UL SI

  2. #2

    Default UL swept by USM

    Clean sweep by USM in home and home series with UL.
    The rest of the story

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