North Texas Daily

Men’s basketball still searching for first conference win after Tulane loss

Men’s basketball still searching for first conference win after Tulane loss

Photo by Edward Balusek / Staff Photographer

Men’s basketball still searching for first conference win after Tulane loss
January 11
19:00 2014

Jordan Ottaway / Intern Writer

The Mean Green men’s basketball team is still looking for its first conference win as the team fell 73-62 to the University of Tulane Green Wave Saturday afternoon in the Super Pit.

UNT (9-7, 0-2) got off to a cold shooting start while Tulane (9-8, 1-1) was hot early, led by freshman guard Jonathan Stark who made his first four shots, two being three pointers. To show the Mean Green’s offensive woes, three of the five starters ended the game scoreless, which did not sit well with head coach Tony Benford.

We had energy in shootaround,” Benford said. “But we came out to the game and played very flat.”

The Mean Green tried to show that energy by quickly pushing the ball down the floor, but the Green Wave defense caused UNT to make mistakes and commit six early turnovers. The team made a run towards the end of the first half when it took advantage of the opposition’s shooting struggles, ending with a buzzer-beating three-pointer by junior guard Jordan Williams to tie the game at 27.

That was a big momentum changer going into the half,” Williams said.

After shooting 32 percent from the field in the first half, UNT needed a momentum change.

With the help of junior guard T.J. Taylor, the team was able to cut Tulane’s lead to four with 8:58 left. Taylor, who led the team in scoring with 19 points, has been battling injuries all season but is finally making a recovery, just in time for conference play.

I feel pretty good, I’m starting to get healthy from my nagging injuries,” Taylor said. “I’m playing catch up, but I’ll be alright.”

From there the Green Wave started to run away with the lead, going on a 12-3 run to make the score 66-53 with 4:21 left. The concern for Benford was the lack of consistency on the offensive end.

We played in spurts,” Benford said. “We have guys that can score, but it needs to be consistent.”

Up next the Mean Green will go on the road to play the Marshall University Thundering Herd (6-10, 0-1) at 6 p.m. Thursday in Huntington, W. Va.

Feature photo: Junior guard T.J. Taylor barrels toward the basket during Saturday’s home game against Tulane at the Super Pit. Photo by Edward Balusek / Staff Photographer 

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