By Kevin Wilson

Hounds back at .500


February 10, 2019

Kevin Wilson

Staff photo: Kevin Wilson Eastern New Mexico senior Chukuka Emili slips between Texas Permian Basin defenders Demarco Jackson and Adam Rivera in the second half of Thursday's Lone Star Conference game at Greyhound Arena. Emili posted a double-double with 16 points and 13 boards in ENMU's 83-66 win.

PORTALES - The golden rule is do unto others as you'd have them do unto you. When it comes to basketball, the golden rule of playing .500 ball could be summed up as doing unto others just as much as they've done unto you.

The Greyhounds did just that Thursday night, controlling the tempo early before pulling away in the second half for an 83-66 win over Texas Permian Basin - the Hounds' second-straight win to push them back to even on the Lone Star Conference leaderboard.

The Greyhounds, 9-11 overall heading into Saturday's game against Western New Mexico, remained sixth in the LSC standings T 6-6 after the win. But they gained a little more breathing room against the Falcons (11-10, 4-7) and avoided a season sweep.

Senior guard Zach Parker led the way with 17 points on 6-of-12 shooting, while Chukuka Emili had a double-double with 16 points and 13 rebounds. But the key was the defense, which forced 20 turnovers, allowed just 3-of-18 shooting and dropped Jacob Ledoux off the top spot in the LSC scoring race.

Ledoux, averaging 18.2 points per game coming in, managed just eight points on 2-of-8 shooting.

"I'm a defensive coach," ENMU coach Tres Segler said. "You want to take away their best guy, and if you look at the games where we've lost we haven't done that. Our guys took it personal this week in practice, and it showed."

The Greyhounds led for the final 34:30 after a Mangistu Jongkor jumper made it 8-7, and pushed the lead to double figures when Parker went on a personal 7-2 run including one of his three 3-pointers.

The teams weren't all that different shooting overall, with ENMU 26-of-59 and Texas Permian Basin 26-of-58. But the key discrepancies were from the 3-point and free-throw lines, where the Greyhounds went 8-of-28 and 23-of-30. The Falcons, in those same areas, were 3-of-18 and 11-of-17.

"We've had a lot of games where they made more free throws that we attempted," Segler said. "We flipped that on them, and any time you do that you have a good chance to win games."

The Falcons got to within a basket midway through the second half, but Eastern responded with a 7-0 run punctuated by a Darius Sawyer flush.

Falcons coach Josh Newman - in his first season at Odessa following a successful run at Arkansas-Fort Smith - pointed to 24 points off turnovers and 24 transition points. It wasn't 48 points because some Greyhound baskets fulfilled both categories, but whatever the number was made Newman uncomfortable.

"You won't beat anybody in this league giving up free points," Newman said. "Give them a lot of credit. They hit their shots. I think they really executed well."


Powered by ROAR Online Publication Software from Lions Light Corporation
© Copyright 2019