North Texas Daily

Mens basketball takes down Angelo State Rams in season opener

Mens basketball takes down Angelo State Rams in season opener

Mens basketball takes down Angelo State Rams in season opener
November 07
19:33 2018

In its first outing of the 2018-19 season, the North Texas men’s basketball team hosted the Angelo State Rams on Tuesday, Nov. 6. The Mean Green improved their all-time record against the Rams to 3-0 on Tuesday with the 89-55 victory.

“I thought we had a great energy,” head coach Grant McCasland said. “It was great to be back in the Super Pit for the first night. I was thrilled.”

The Mean Green shot a productive 30-of-60 from the field and let it fly from three making 14-of-32 from deep. The Rams shot 35 percent from the field.

“We’ve been in the gym all summer working on shots,” sophomore forward Zachary Simmons said. “The threes really spread the floor and [made the] offense a lot easier for us.”

Redshirt freshman guard Jmoja Gibson played his first game in a year after being sidelined by injury. He led all scorers with 32 points on 10-of-14 shooting and 7-of-11 from deep, scoring 25 of his 32 points and hitting five three-pointers in the second half.

“Just to be able to play in front of the crowd again it feels [really] good,” Gibson said. “Once I started to settle down, shots started to go in.”

Junior guard DJ Draper had the second most points for North Texas with 19.

At the halfway mark of the first half, North Texas held a 23-16 lead before settling in and holding the Rams scoreless for eight minutes. During that span, the Mean Green grabbed a 20-point lead and finished the first half with a 44-24 lead.

“Their team from the jump caused us problems,” McCasland said. “We couldn’t get stops, [and] they made quite a few baskets on their first possessions. They were getting a lot of offensive rebounds at first. After that, I liked our energy. Once we settled in defensively we strung some stops together and made the separation. Angelo executed well, but we were amped up.”

In the second half, North Texas went on a 17-2 run, extending their lead further to 35 points.

“When we have that many shooters on the floor and make stops, we’re a very hard team to guard,” McCasland said.

Featured Image: Mean green guard Ryan Woolridge dribbles down the court on Tuesday’s night game against the Angelo State Rams. Jessika Hardy

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Joshua Paveglio

Joshua Paveglio

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