Lions lasso Mustangs, 86-75
Quick-start sets tempo in road win
SAGU at Texas Wesleyan on Monday
HOBBS, New Mexico -- The Southwestern Assemblies of God University men’s basketball team, on the strength of a hot start, defeated the University of the Southwest on the road, 86-75, on Saturday afternoon.
SAGU, now 10-3 overall and 5-2 in the Red River Athletic Conference, made 52% of their shots and dominated the game on the boards. By owning a 47-25 margin in rebounds, the Lions limited second chances, a key factor when the hosts tried to assemble a late comeback.
The Lions recovered from a home loss to LSU-Shreveport on Thursday in which their defense allowed the Pilots to make 48% of their shots.
Two days later the team held USW to just six points for the first 14 minutes while building a 24-point lead (30-6). The Mustangs missed 18 of their first 19 points and were forced into 11 turnovers in the process.
Southwest (3-7, 0-6 in RRAC) finished the first half on a 16-8 run to draw to within 43-31.
Dominique Rambo (Dallas, Tx / Oklahoma Wesleyan Univ., Trinity Christian School) was the Lions' leading scorer in the first half with seven points.
SAGU maintained the lead, building a 17-point scoreboard bulge, at 64-47. Mike Nwelue (Lewisville, Tx / Lewisville HS) sank two foul shots with 10:41 to play for their largest lead.
Over the next five and one-half minutes the Ponies outscored SAGU 23-12, including a 9-2 spurt to cut their deficit to 76-70.
That’s when James Ford (Victoria, Tx / Faith Academy) began making plays to reestablish the lead. The senior took a pass from Nwelue and drained a three-point basket, then converted 3-of-4 free throws for an 82-70 advantage.
The floor leader knocked down another shot, thanks to an assist from Jonathan Walter (Garland, Tx / Garland HS) to push the score to 86-72.
“We played a very impressive brand of defense,” said Head Coach Donnie Bostwick. “Holding them to six points for so long allowed us to build a good lead. We basically kept a ten-point cushion after that.”
“When they cut it to six, ‘Truck’ (Ford) answered with a big ‘three,’” he added.
Nwelue (pronounced like DWELL-way) had a solid performance. He poured in 20 points by connecting on 7-of-9 shots, with two triples. The sophomore latched onto six rebounds, four of them on the offensive end. He also had two assists.
Ford and Rambo accounted for 15 and 14 points.
The team also received a collaborative effort by the bench, which scored 31 points and 20 rebounds.
Bostwick specifically mentioned a pair, Maurice Oglesby (Arlington, Tx / Zion Academy) and Devante Dunn (Wills Point, Tx / Wills Point HS).
Oglesby (OH-guhls-bee) grabbed six boards in ten minutes, while Dunn was one of two reserves accounting for eight points.
“Mo and Devante gave us a big lift,” the coach said.
Bostwick juggled the line-up, with Tyler Guidry (Houston, Tx / Westbury Christian) and Ryan Alford (Dayton, Tx / Dayton HS) earning starts. Guidry had a team-best five assists while reeling in six boards. Alford made eight rebounds.
The team has one more game to be played, on Monday, December 17, when they face Texas Wesleyan University (9-3, 4-2 in RRAC) in Fort Worth.
The game will start at 7:30pm at the Sid Richardson Center on the TWU campus.