The University of Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns snapped a four-game losing streak on Saturday night inside the Cajundome.
Led by a strong first-half by Jalen Johnson and a solid night of shooting from shooting beyond the arc, UL defeated in-state rival and Sun Belt Conference foe ULM 81-60. With the victory, the Ragin’ Cajuns improve to 8-13 overall and 3-7 in Sun Belt play.
How It Happened:
The Ragin’ Cajuns started off the game with a 5-0 lead thanks to a layup and three-pointer by Jalen Johnson. UL held the lead for the first five and half minutes of the game until ULM’s Michael Ertel made a jumper with 14:32 left that tied the game 8-8. Less than a minute later, the Warhawks took the lead with a three-pointer by Tyree White.
UL responded with a jumper by Johnson, followed by a three-pointer by P.J. Hardy, and then Johnson drained four free throws. A few minutes later, UL had its largest lead of the first half after Johnson hit a three-pointer which gave the Cajuns a 22-14 lead.
ULM responded with a 8-0 run highlighted by a pair of three-pointers by Ertel. The remainder of the first half proved to be a back-and-forth contest but the Cajuns ended the half on a 6-0 run which included a corner three-pointer at the buzzer by Mason Aucoin.
ULM opened the second half on a 5-0 run which cut the lead down to four points. UL responded with a alley oop dunk to Tirus Smith from Mylik Wilson and then outscored the Warhawks 11-4 in the next three-plus minutes as Cedric Russell, back after missing one game due to a foot injury, made a pair of three-pointers.
With 12:38 in the second half, UL held a comfortable 54-41 lead.
ULM was never able to really threaten UL’s double-digit lead in the second half as the Ragin’ Cajuns picked up their eighth victory of the season.
Big Number: 9
That was the number of three-pointers the Ragin’ Cajuns made in Saturday’s win. In the previous four games (all losses), UL made only 6, 7, 5 and 6 three-pointers.
Player of the Game: Jalen Johnson
UL’s junior forward recorded his seventh 20-point game of the season and led all scorers as he scored 27 points on 7-of-10 shooting and went 10-of-12 from the free throw line.
Up Next: UL returns to action on Thursday with a road trip to UT Arlington. Tip is scheduled for 7 p.m.