North Texas Daily

Men’s basketball has best start in 50 years, extends winning streak to 7

Men’s basketball has best start in 50 years, extends winning streak to 7

Men’s basketball has best start in 50 years, extends winning streak to 7
November 22
11:39 2018

The North Texas men’s basketball team (7-0)  edged out an overtime victory against the Maine Black Bears (0-5)  by a score of 74-63 Tuesday at The Super Pit — making the Mean Green 7-0 for the first time since the 1968-69 season.

During overtime, the Mean Green handled the Bears, outscoring them 14-3, only allowing one field goal in the extra period.

“This was a good game to learn from and Zach [Simmons] had a really big game,” head coach Grant McCasland said. “We tried to make sure we did a good job of getting him touches, and we did. Zach was getting opportunities to play one-on-one down there, and it was working for a while.”

Sophomore center Zachary Simmons led the Mean Green in scoring, getting a new career-high 24 points on 10 of 14 shooting to go along with eight boards and two blocks.

“Credit to the [Bears],” junior guard DJ Draper said. “They were patient, [and] they kept playing. It was a good test for us and a good lesson learned to never take your foot off the pedal.”

After losing in the first half, the Bears battled back in the second half and we’re only down six with about a minute and a half left in the game. The Bears came right back and stretch big man Isaiah White went coast-to-coast and scored on a layup, leaving only 0.9 seconds left on the clock sending the game into overtime. North Texas attempted a full-court pass to Simmons, but it flew right through his hands, forcing the game to overtime.

“They had a good game plan limiting our transition,” Simmons said. “It came down to the wire. They made some big shots, but we ended up stepping up and making stops in overtime.”

DJ Draper scored 11 points for the Mean Green, hitting three of the team’s six baskets from behind the arch. He also put in two boards and two assists.

“We came together at the end,” Simmons said. “We got a lot of grit just being able to get into our bank, and being able to play means a lot.”

Featured Image: Junior guard DJ Draper shoots against Maryland Eastern Shore. The Mean Green won 68-34. Rachel Walters

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Joshua Paveglio

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