With Thursday night’s 77-70 loss to South Alabama, the Louisiana men’s basketball team dropped their third straight Sun Belt Conference game and dropped to 8-8 overall on the season.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
Louisiana found itself down briefly early as South Alabama jumped out to a quick 5-4 lead in the first minute and half of the game. The Ragin’ Cajuns would retake the lead with a pair of hook shot jumpers by Jordan Brown.
South Alabama made it a one-point lead but once again Brown answered with back-to-back buckets. Louisiana pushed its lead up to 11 points after a three-pointer by Durey Cadwell and a free throw by Brown. With 7:29 left in the first half, Louisiana held a 22-11 lead.
South Alabama would utilize its zone defense down the stretch of the first half and Louisiana was held without a field goal in the final 8:51 of the half. The Ragin’ Cajuns lone points came off of five Brown free throws.
Louisiana shot 37.5 percent from the field in the first half but still held a 26-20 lead at the break. South Alabama meanwhile shot 23.3 percent from the field.
Louisiana pushed its lead back up to 10 points after a driving layup by Trajan Wesley.
South Alabama’s Javon Franklin made a layup which sparked a 13-3 run for the Jaguars. After LSU transfer Charles Manning Jr. hit a three-pointer with 14:27 left in the second, South Alabama and Louisiana were tied 38-38.
Louisiana’s Kobe Julien answered with a three-pointer but then Kayo Goncalves responded with a three-pointer of his own. South Alabama then took the lead on a jumper by Manning Jr.
The two teams continued to trade buckets as neither team led by more than four points in the next four-plus minutes. That would change as South Alabama seized control of the game as the Jaguars went on a 15-2 run. South Alabama led by 16 points with 3:42 to play but Louisiana fought back and trimmed the lead down to six points with less than 45 seconds left. The comeback came up short and the Ragin’ Cajuns fell at home.
BIG NUMBER: 40
South Alabama’s zone defense frustrated Louisiana all night long as the Ragin’ Cajuns shot only 40 percent from the field in the game.
PLAYER OF THE GAME: JORDAN BROWN
The Ragin’ Cajuns lone bright spot on offense was Brown who recorded a double-double with 21 points and 11 rebounds.
UP NEXT: Louisiana (8-8, 3-3 SBC) returns to action on Saturday when it hosts Troy inside the Cajundome. Tip is set for 7 p.m.