Weevils Knock Off Unbeaten Reddies, 85-70

Courtesy of
Brian Ramsey

tv Sports reflection 10dbMONTICELLO – The University of Arkansas at Monticello men’s basketball team gave Henderson State its first loss of the season with an 85-70 victory on Thursday night at home inside Steelman Field House.

   The Boll Weevils (4-3, 1-2 Great American Conference) outscored the Reddies (6-1, 2-1 GAC) 20-12 in the final six minutes of the second half to seal its first GAC win of the year and snap a two-game losing skid.

   UAM forced 19 turnovers in the contest and recorded 11 steals, which ultimately led to 28 points off turnovers and 16 fast-break points. The Boll Weevils also used 57 percent field goal shooting and five players reaching double-digits in scoring to aid to the victory.

   The two squads exchanged five lead changes throughout the first nine minutes of the game before UAM was able to create any cushion. Senior Kori Forge rattled off seven consecutive points for UAM to give his team a four-point lead during a 10-1 run. That run gave the team a six-point lead with just under seven minutes left in the first half.

   Forge gave UAM its first double-digit lead of the contest with a three-pointer at the 3:02 mark of the opening half, putting the Weevils on top 32-22.

   After holding a seven-point edge of 34-27 at the halftime break, the Weevils watched the Reddies pull back to within two points in the first three minutes of the second half following a quick 7-2 HSU scoring run.

   With HSU looking to trim its deficit to below four points, junior guard Ramon Mejia answered twice for UAM with a  three-pointer at the 14:36 mark and another at the 11:05 mark, putting UAM back on top by seven points with both shots. Mejia’s second trey was followed by a three-pointer from freshman Ryan Lensing to give UAM its first double-digit lead of the second half with 10:30 remaining.

   UAM held at least a five-point lead throughout the remainder of the contest, and stretched that lead to as much as 18 points on a layup from Mejia with 1:16 left on the clock to cap an 11-2 scoring run for the Boll Weevils.

   As a team, UAM posted its second best field goal percentage of the season at 56.7 percent (34-of-60). UAM was 33 percent on three-pointers (7-of-21) and 59 percent on foul shots (10-of-17).

   Forge led all scorers with 28 points on a 10-of-17 shooting performance, including three three-pointers. Forge added six assists and five steals to his final totals. Junior Jamal Nixon, senior A.J. Calhoun and junior Dayton Mickens all had 11 points in the win. Calhoun added a game-high 10 rebounds for his second double-double of the year. Mickens added six boards, while Nixon had a season-high six assists. Mejia rounded out UAM’s double-digit scorers with 10 points.

   HSU shot 49 percent from the field (27-of-55), 29 percent on three-pointers (5-of-17) and 65 percent on foul shots (11-of-17). Andrew Ensley led the Reddies with 27 points. Melvin Haynes and Denzel Lyles added 12 points each.

   The Boll Weevils are back in action this Saturday, Dec. 8 at home against Ouachita Baptist. Tipoff is set for 4 p.m. inside Steelman Field House.

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