Red Wolves rout UA-Monticello 95-64 in exhibition finale

JONESBORO, Ark. ( – The Arkansas State University men's basketball team continued its dominance in exhibitions as the Red Wolves rolled to a 95-64 victory over Arkansas-Monticello this Tuesday (Nov. 5) night at the Convocation Center in Jonesboro, Ark., with six players scoring in double digits.

A-State extended its exhibition winning streak to 18 consecutive and the Red Wolvesimproved to 19-1 overall in such outings with the 31-point win.  Senior guard Melvin Johnson III led A-State with a game-high 22 points, hitting on seven-of-nine shots from the floor and knocked down three-of-five three-point attempts.  Senior guard Brandon Reed tallied 17 points and senior forward Kendrick Washington had 14 points along with a game-high eight rebounds off the bench.  Senior guard Ed Townsel, senior forward Kirk Van Slyke, and junior guard Rakeem Dickerson all recorded 11 points apiece as the Red Wolves shot 55 percent from the field (33-60) for the game.  Sophomore forward Raeford Worsham helped A-State to a 35-30 edge on the boards with six caroms.

A three-pointer by Kirk Van Slyke gave A-State a 3-0 lead as the Red Wolves led throughout the first half, including by double digits the final 10-plus minutes.  Following Van Slyke's triple to start the contest, A-State's margin was at seven points or less through the opening seven-plus minutes.  The Boll Weevils managed to trim a seven-point deficit (11-4) down to just a point at 13-12 with 12:42 showing on the clock before A-State reeled off 12 unanswered points in a three-minute span to go up by 13 at 25-12 on a Brandon Reed layup with 9:44 left in the half.  The Red Wolves held their double-figure lead the rest of the way, which included a 20-point advantage (44-24) with just under a minute to go to take a 44-26 lead at halftime.

Arkansas State shot a blistering 64 percent in the second half to build its 16-point lead at the half up to 33 points (81-43) with 7:13 remaining in the game as Arkansas-Monticello would draw no closer than 27 points at 87-60 for the duration.  The Red Wolves limited UAM to 39.6% shooting for the contest and forced the Boll Weevils into 16 turnovers to eight of their own.

Arkansas-Monticello received 13 points from D'Audrio Patton and Brandon Sims chipped in with 12 points.

"I thought we were better tonight," said A-State head coach John Brady.  "We're still not where we nedd to be, but we did defend and had better ball movement.  This team seems to be unselfish and is a better passing team from a turnover standpoint.

"We have to get better defensively as a group, but we do have some (offensive) weapons with this team.  However, we still need to get better with the teams we have coming up on our schedule," added Brady.

The two teams each scored 34 points in the paint, but A-State posted a 32-21 points advantage in bench scoring and had a 19-7 lead in points off turnovers.

Arkansas State's season opener is Monday, Nov. 11, as the Red Wolves visit Jackson State in a 7:30 p.m. (CT) non-league contest at JSU's Lee E. Williams Athletics and Assembly Center.  The game will be carried live by the EAB/Red Wolves Sports Network on 107.9 KFIN-FM with Matt Stolz calling the action.