Red Wolves shred ULM 63-39
ASU holds Warhawks to season low point total
Published: Sunday, January 20, 2013
Updated: Sunday, January 20, 2013 00:01
With help from senior Trey Finn’s 17 points and a stout second half-defensive effort, Arkansas State held Louisiana Monroe to its season low point total and snapped a two game losing skid in a 63-39 win Saturday night at the Convocation Center.
In their first game in a week, the Red Wolves (11-7, 5-4) overcame weak three-point shooting in the first half and went on a 15-1 run early in the second in an effort that sent the Warhawks back to Monroe (3-12, 2-7) with their fourth straight loss.
“It’s not a big secret. Defensively we were really good. We just kind of bothered that team the entire second half,” said head coach John Brady. “I don’t care what the team is, you hold a team to 14 points, you got a chance to win a lot of games.”
ASU finished the night with 13 steals, with Ed Townsel and Rakeem Dickerson each totaling four, and 19 forced ULM turnovers, while ASU only sent the Warhawks to the free point line for nine shots, where they only made two.
The Red Wolves got off to a meandering start, leading 7-2 before giving up six unanswered points for the first of six lead changes. The last came with 4:12 left in the first half when Cameron Golden hit a jumper to give ASU a 21-20 lead.
But the game was only close for as long as it was due to a lack luster three point shooting from the Red Wolves. ASU finished out the first half hitting only 3 of 17 attempted shots from beyond the arch for a 17.6 percentage. During a four-minute stretch, ASU attempted and missed seven trey shots.
“A lot of teams are zoning us because when we run our man offense and they play us against man, it’s hard to stop us,” Finn said. “So they zone us and we have open looks and we take them. Here lately they haven’t been going in like they were at the beginning of the season.”
The streak ended with Golden’s jumper and Finn ended the three-point cold stretch by hitting a shot from the left side of the arch that went in right as the halftime buzzer sounded. Finn finished the night with three 3-pointers on eight attempts.
“[ULM] hadn’t played zone all year long, except for maybe two possessions out of their first [few] games. But I had a sneaky suspension they were going to play zone and we tried to work against the zone the last two to three days,” Brady said. “You can work all you want against the zone and get as many quality shots as you can. But for it to look like you’re doing something, the ball has to go in.”
The ball went in more easily in the second half as ASU shot 40 percent from behind the arch, with Finn and Ed Townsel each hitting three for the game. Townsel, despite starting the game 0-5 from the field, finished with 13 points and four steals.
Finn’s 17 points gave him his fourth straight double-digit game and also put the Little Rock native above 1,000 points for his career at ASU.
“He’s maybe turning a corner a little bit, and we sure do need him. Our team functions better when he’s getting 14 or 15 [points] a game,” Brady said of Finn. “I’m happy for him. I’ve coach a lot of guys in my time and he’s right up there at the top.”
The accomplishment moves Finn into a club of less than 25 players in ASU’s history, Finn’s teammate Brandon Peterson is 28 points away from joining him in the club.
“It feels good. [I’m] just out there playing for my team. We wanted to get that win today and that’s what we did,” Finn said.
In the Warhawk’s season low point production, they were led by James Jayon with 11 and Millaun Brown with 10. 32 of ULM’s 39 points came from the paint compared to ASU’s 24.
After the re-establishing game Saturday night, Brady will lead his team to Troy, Ala. Thursday night to take on the Trojans before a three-game home stand back in Jonesboro.
“We need to put all of our focus on that game Thursday and come back here with a road win,” Brady said. “We’ve got three critical games at home that can really change or make the season a lot more significant than it already is.”
The Red Wolves will tip off against Troy at 7:30 p.m. Thursday night and the game can be heard on 107.9 FM.