Three-point show: Garth nails 7 treys; Price wins No. 200
Published 11:54 pm Monday, December 19, 2016
Lamar sports information
BEAUMONT — Sophomore Nick Garth scored 22 points to lead the Lamar men’s basketball team to a milestone victory Monday night over Liberty (Va.), 82-65. The win was LU head coach Tic Price’s 200thcareer victory.
“Tonight is not about me but Lamar University,” said Price. “When I woke up this morning, I wasn’t thinking about getting win number 200. We were focused on getting just one win over Liberty today. This has been just another day at the office for myself and this team.”
It was a pretty impressive day at the office for the Cardinals (6-5) who finished night shooting 27 of 43 (.628) from the field, including a season-best 12 of 20 (.600) performance from beyond the arc. Garth led a host of Cardinals who finished the game in double figures. LU had five players score at least 10 points Monday, which marked the third consecutive game that Big Red has had five players in double digits.
“I’m very pleased with our effort tonight,” said Price. “We shot the ball well, especially in the second half, but I am really pleased with the fact that we took care of the hustle plays tonight. We won on the glass, and when they turned the ball over we took advantage on the other end of the floor.
“Offensively, we shot the ball really well, and defensively we made stops when absolutely needed to have them,” added Price.
Although Liberty had a solid night from the field knocking down nearly 45 percent of their shots, including nine three-pointers, the Flames couldn’t keep pace with the Red and White’s constant barrage. In addition to torching the nets to better than 60 percent in each half, the Cardinals outrebounded their guests by six and took full advantage of Liberty’s turnovers. Both teams turned the ball over 12 times but the Cardinals converted Liberty’s mistakes into 21 points, while the Flames could manage just six points off turnovers. Big Red also had a significant advantage in terms of its overall depth. The Cardinals’ bench outscored Liberty’s reserves, 42-28.
In addition to Garth’s 22 points, sophomore Dorian Chatman added 12 points and pulled down seven rebounds and junior Joey Frenchwood recorded his first-career double-double with 10 points and 12 assists. Classmate Torey Noel scored 11 and sophomore Josh Nzeakor came off the bench to add 11 points and four rebounds.
Every Cardinal got into the act as sophomore Terrance Hubby scored seven points, on 3 of 4 shooting, and pulled down four rebounds in a reserve role. He also blocked a shot and recorded a steal in the game.
“We outscored their bench, 42-28,” said Price. “Our bench did an outstanding job of giving us that extra boost. We played a lot of people tonight and every guy that stepped on the court helped us. I thought Terrance Hubby really stepped up for us tonight.”
The Cardinals were so impressive that leading-scorer and rebounder Colton Weisbrod only played 14 minutes scoring four points and pulling down five rebounds.
Noel got the Cardinals out to a quick start hitting the team’s first three shots — all three-pointers — to give the Red and White an early 9-2 advantage. Junior Zjori Bosha followed with a three on the next possession and the Cardinals were off and flying jumping out to a 20-6 lead. The 14-point advantage was the team’s largest of the half.
After a Weisbrod layup to build the 20-6 lead, the Flames slowly started to chip away at the lead. Following a three-pointer from Liberty’s A.C. Reid, the lead was trimmed to just eight points with nearly nine minutes remaining in the half. The Flames pulled to within a possession with Ryan Kemrite scored on a jumper in the paint just before half. The Cardinals closed out the half with four-straight points to take a seven-point lead into the locker room.
Following the lead of Noel from the first half, Garth opened the second with the hot hand. Following a basket from Kemrite to start the half, Garth knocked down consecutive triples, followed by a dunk from Nzeakor on the next possession. After three-pointer from Liberty, Garth added three-pointers on the next two LU possessions to push the lead back to 14 points. Liberty could get no closer than 12 points in the final 13 minutes of the game as the Cardinals pulled away for the win.
Garth never cooled off in the second half going a perfect 6-of-6 from three-point range in the final 20 minutes. He finished the game with a career-high seven triples (.875). The Flames were led by 15 points from Reid and Kemrite.
The Cardinals return to action Wednesday when they host Arlington Baptist.