Privateers break Cards’ four-game win streak

Published 12:33 am Friday, January 6, 2017

BEAUMONT — New Orleans kept Lamar off the scoreboard for the game’s first 6 minutes. Lamar is likely to rue those 6 minutes for 24 hours.

Nick Garth could not convert on a good look at a potential winning three-point shot, and New Orleans sealed the game on late free throws to win in overtime, 66-62 in front of 2,017 at the Montagne Center on Thursday night. The loss ends a 6-0 home start for Lamar (9-6, 1-1 Southland) this season and an overall four-game winning streak.

Lamar guard Nick Garth did not hide his emotions after the game, burying his face in his jersey at the postgame conference table.

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“We let one get away,” Garth said after leading the Cardinals with 13 points.

Colton Weisbrod, facing his first collegiate team for the first time, missed his first of two free throws with 12.8 seconds left in regulation, but made the second to tie the score at 58.

Christavious Gill, a career 1,000-point scorer for New Orleans (8-6, 3-0) missed a leaning three-point shot, and Travin Thibodeaux could not get a tip-in to fall before the buzzer.

Weisbrod, who had 12 points, and Nzeakor (10) both fouled out on offensive fouls in overtime. Lamar was whistled for 12 of those and had 25 total.

Zjori Bosha’s three-point shot at the 14-minute mark of the first half broke an 0-for-6 field goal start for the Cardinals. Lamar had trailed by as much as 25-15 with 4:08 left in the first half, but that deficit quickly went away with the help of Torey Noel. The once-starting guard came off the bench with six points during a 10-0 run, and Lamar eventually took the lead at 28-26 on a three-point Garth shot.

Makur Puou’s putback at the first-half buzzer evened the score.

Lamar got within 48-46 before Erik Thomas fell hard on his hip following a made alley-oop dunk with 5:51 left in regulation. Thomas finished with 11 points and 10 rebounds.

Joey Frenchwood canned a three-point basket with 2:32 remaining to tie the game at 54, and Weisbrod’s hook shot with 1:19 to go broke the tie.

Thomas and Nzeakor traded missed free throws before Gill canned a three-pointer with 28 seconds to go to put the Privateers ahead 58-57. Weisbrod drove to the basket and was fouled, where he missed 1 of 2.

Lamar led twice in overtime, but neve by more than two points. UNO made 4 of 6 free throws before Lamar had a shot to tie or win the game.

The Privateers’ half-court pressure cause the Cards to lose handle of the ball, but they managed to work it to Garth, whose three-ball with three seconds left would not go. Thomas sealed the game with two foul shots following a Garth foul.

Thibodeaux led the Privateers with 14 points and five assists. Gill and Puou each added 10. West Brook graduate Michael Zeno had two points for UNO.

Weisbrod had 12 points, and Nzeakor 10 points and eight boards.

Lamar hosts Southeastern Louisiana at 4:30 p.m. Saturday to continue a three-game home stand.

A moment of silence was held before the game in memory of Mahlon Luke, a Nederland resident and Cardinals fan who died of leukemia this week, according to the public address announcer. He was 11.

I.C. Murrell: 721-2435. Twitter: @ICMurrellPANews

About I.C. Murrell

I.C. Murrell was promoted to editor of The News, effective Oct. 14, 2019. He previously served as sports editor since August 2015 and has won or shared eight first-place awards from state newspaper associations and corporations. He was born in Memphis, Tennessee, grew up mostly in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and graduated from the University of Arkansas at Monticello.

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