Cajuns’ Second Half Run Sinks Texas Southern 84-73
Justin Miller and Frank Bartley IV keyed a 16-2 second half surge midway through the second half and the Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns won their fourth straight game, beating Texas Southern 84-73 at Blackham Coliseum Sunday afternoon.
Tied at 58 with 11:08 to play, Miller and Bartley combined for 13 points over the next 4:39 to lead Louisiana (4-2) to a 71-60 lead and freshman P. J. Hardy nailed a three point basket to make the score 74-60 with 4:50 left. Texas Southern (4-2), which had won four straight road games, never got closer than six the rest of the way.
Bryce Washington led the way for the Cajuns with 22 points and added ten rebounds for the Cajuns, who won the rebounding battle over the taller Tigers 41-30. Miller scored 12 points and tore down 14 rebounds. Bartley and Jay Wright each scored 18 points and were a combined 14-25 from the field as Louisiana shot 49.2% for the contest.
"Justin really fought hard tonight," head coach Bob Marlin said. "He got some big rebounds for us throughout the game and hit most of his free throws. We didn't shoot it that well from three (5-20) but a couple of those three point shots were really big for us."
Zach Lofton scored 16 of his 24 points in the second half to lead the Tigers, while Dulani Robinson added 19, but had only five points after intermission. Derek Griffin recorded a double double for TSU with ten points and eleven rebounds.
The Cajuns took good care of the ball during the game, with only nine turnovers. Louisiana tallied 14 assists in the contest, with Washington and Wright leading the way with four apiece.
"One of our goals written on the board was single digit turnovers," Marlin said. "And really, it was just seven in my mind. We got a tough ten second call and Jay (Wright) got hit with a travel while calling time out."
Texas Southern led by as many as seven points in the first half, the last time with 6:24 remaining after a Kevin Scott jumper. But a 12-5 Cajuns' run, fueled by seven straight points from Wright, tied the game at 34 with 4:09 to play. The Cajuns took their first lead of the night on a three point play by Wright and led by as many as four before settling for a 43-42 lead at the half.
The Cajuns will play their first game in the newly renovated Cajundome Thursday night at 7:15 when they take on Nicholls State as part of a doubleheader, with women's action beginning at 5:00pm.