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Mean Green men’s basketball drops to last in conference with loss to Old Dominion

Mean Green men’s basketball drops to last in conference with loss to Old Dominion

Mean Green men’s basketball drops to last in conference with loss to Old Dominion
February 13
23:49 2014

John Lugo // Sports Editor

With the 72-62 loss against Old Dominion University Thursday night in the Super Pit, the Mean Green men’s basketball team extended its losing streak to five games and is now tied for last place in Conference USA.

The losing streak is the longest UNT (11-13, 2-8) has gone without a win since last February. Marshall University and Rice University are the two other teams with the same conference record.

“Nobody’s going to feel sorry for us,” head coach Tony Benford said. “The only way to get out of the cellar is we have to get back to work tomorrow.”

The teams midway through the first half had identical shot efficiency, both shooting 5-for-12 for 41 percent with 11:38 remaining in the game. Fast break opportunities kept UNT in the game, while the Monarchs (12-13, 6-4) outside shooting pushed them ahead for the 35-32 halftime lead.

The Mean Green’s 32 total free throws is nearly a third higher than the 24.5 attempts per game before this game, but the Monarchs also got to the line 12 more times in the second half and continued its hot outside shooting.

Old Dominion shot 11-for-19 on three-pointers for the game and had four guards score 63 points combined, more than UNT’s total. With 7:22 remaining the Mean Green led 50-45, before Monarchs freshman guard Ambrose Mosely scored the 11 straight points for ODU and eventually scoring a career-high 21 points.

“We talked about it all day about who to get to in our zone and our man, as far as three-point shooters,” Benford said. “We didn’t do a good job of containing those guys.”

Sophomore guard Maurice Aniefiok said the team emphasized getting this win to head in the right direction and was disappointed at letting this game get away.

“We needed to get this one just to get back on it,” sophomore guard Maurice Aniefiok said. “We all felt like this was an opportunity we let slip, but we still have a lot of games to go, so we just have to buckle up for the next one.”

After two free throws by senior guard Alzee Williams gave the team a 58-57 lead with 3:39 remaining, UNT didn’t score again until senior guard Vertrail Vaughns got fouled with 57 seconds remaining and the team faced an eight-point deficit. In that time frame, the team committed four fouls and three turnovers.

“I think we have to execute better down the stretch,” junior guard Chris Jones. “I think we took a couple quick shots and had a couple turnovers down the stretch that hurt us and let the game get away a little bit.”

If the Mean Green loses its next game, it will be the first time since the 2003 season that UNT has had a six-game losing streak. The team’s next chance at a win will be against East Carolina University at 7 p.m. Feb. 15 in the Super Pit.

Feature photo: Junior guard Chris Jones lays the ball into the hoop uncontested by any Old Dominion University defenders. Jones was tied for most points with 13 scored on Thursday night at the Super Pit. Photo by Edward Balusek / Staff Photographer 

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