JONESBORO, Ark. (ASU) – Senior guard Trey Finn scored a game-high 17 points and reached a significant scoring milestone in the process as the Arkansas State University men's basketball team rolled past ULM, 63-39, this Saturday (Jan. 19) night in a Sun Belt Conference (SBC) game before an ASU Convocation Center season-best 4,783 crowd in Jonesboro, Ark.
Finn, who became the 24th player in ASU history to score 1,000 career points, was among three Red Wolves to crack the double-figure scoring column. Junior guard Ed Townsel added 13 points and senior forward Brandon Peterson had 11 points with a game-high 12 rebounds to record his sixth double-double of the season.
Arkansas State is now 11-7 overall and 5-4 in the SBC's West Division as the Red Wolves run their home mark to a current 8-2 ledger this campaign. The 39 points scored by ULM was one shy of tying an ASU record for fewest points allowed as the Red Wolves held Texas-Pan American to 38 points in a 46-38 home victory on Feb. 8, 1996.
ULM, which has now lost at least its last 11 outings on ASU's home floor, drops its third straight in falling to 3-12 overall and 2-7 in the SBC.
"The most important thing tonight was the great crowd and their involvement," said ASU head coach John Brady. "Our guys played hard and gave a great effort. What our fans saw tonight will hopefully make them want to come back for our next home game (next Saturdayversus Florida Atlantic)."
In the opening half, the two teams exchanged leads six times before the Red Wolves went up for good at 21-20 on jumper from freshman guard Cameron Golden with 4:12 remaining. Trey Finn, who netted 10 points at the break to lead all scorers, capped off the half with a three-pointer at the buzzer to give ASU a 29-25 halftime advantage. Finn's bucket signified his 1,000th career point as the crowd gave him a standing ovation going into the locker room.
Arkansas State would lead the entire second half as the Red Wolves built a 36-33 lead at the 11:49 mark all the way up 20 points (55-35) with 3:50 left to be played. A-State would outscore the Warhawks by an 8-3 margin in the final 150 seconds to earn the win and snap their two-game losing streak. The Red Wolves concluded the half shooting 48% (12-25) and 41.8% (23-55) for the game. ULM was held to 25% (6-24) by A-State in the second half after connecting on 48 percent (12-25) in the opening 20 minutes to wind up at a 36.7% (18-49) clip for the night. ASU also forced the Warhawks in committing 19 turnovers and subsequently outscored ULM 24-6 off the opposition's miscues.
Cameron Golden and Raeford Worsham contributed seven points apiece on the offensive end while freshman forward Kelvin Downs blocked a game-most three shots. Sophomore guard Rakeem Dickerson, who distributed five assists, and Ed Townsel also chalked up four steals apiece to help spearhead the defensive charge.
"Defensively this was as good as we've been in a while," said Brady. "We rebounded and pressured the ball well in the second half which seemed to bother them. It was good for us to play like we did in the second half with that type of effort and we need to maintain playing with a lot of toughness."
The Red Wolves continue conference play next Thursday, Jan. 24, versus the Troy Trojans in Troy, Ala. A 7:30 p.m. (CT) start time is scheduled for the matchup at Trojan Arena. ASU will then begin a three-gameconference home stand, commencing Saturday, Jan. 26, as Florida Atlantic visits the ASU Convocation Center in a 7:30 p.m. (CT) contest to be televised live on the Sun Belt Network.