MAVERICKS DROP SOUTHLAND CONFERENCE GAME AT UTSA
Feb. 20, 2008
SAN ANTONIO - - For the second consecutive game, the UT Arlington men's basketball team became the victim of a hot-shooting opponent and a stellar performance by one of its players.
This time, it was Devin Gibson, the freshman point guard from UTSA. His 26 points on 9 of 12 shooting sank the Mavericks, 80-72, on the road at the Convocation Center against UTSA in San Antonio. Each time the Mavericks cut into an early deficit in the Southland Conference game, the Roadrunners got a big basket by Gibson, who also pulled down nine rebounds and dished out six assists.
UTA (16-9, 5-7 in the SLC), which allowed 32 points to McNeese State's John Ford on Saturday, lost for the third consecutive time. UTSA (11-13, 5-6), which is fighting the Mavericks for a playoff spot in next month's have found new life in conference play and extended a win streak to three.
But it wasn't enough to overcome 49.1 percent shooting by the Roadrunners, who were 8-for-19 from the 3-point line.
UTA shot 40.3 percent.
The Mavericks dug themselves a huge hole early because of the Roadrunners shooting and a glimpse of what would come in the game from Gibson. UTSA took a 40-27 lead at halftime, and Gibson did most of the damage with 15 points.
Midway through the first half, UTSA turned a 19-16 lead into a 29-18 advantage. Gibson got the run started with a 3-pointer, and Keith Spencer capped it with a dunk in transition. After a 3-pointer by Isaiah Allen from the right wing, the Mavericks stopped the spurt with a Jeremy Smith layup and Griffin follow to make it 22-29.
But UTSA wasn't finished. It quickly answered UT Arlington's back-to-back baskets with an 11-2 run. By the time a 3-pointer by Roadrunners forward JohnMark Ludwick swished through the basket, UTA was down 40-24 in the closing minute of the half.
Guignard answered with a 3-pointer in the left corner to provide the halftime score.
UTSA shot 55.6 percent from the field in the half, compared to UTA's 35.7.
The Roadrunners were 5-for-9 from the 3-point line, getting long-range jumpers from four different players.
UT Arlington slowly chipped away at the deficit early in the second half, getting it to nine points on three different occasions. When a Cardell Hunter layup in transition cut it to seven points, 49-42, at the 13-minute mark, the Mavericks were back in the game. With 10:52 left, the Roadrunners had cooled offensively, and an Anthony Vereen layup made it 54-48.
That's when UTSA forward Ludwick gave the Roadrunners a huge lift off the bench. Ludwick hit three 3-pointers on in a span of two minutes, and a six-point UTSA lead went to 60-48. UTSA made it 64-48 before a Guignard 3-pointer stopped the run.
The Mavericks rallied at the end, cutting the deficit to six points in the closing two minutes. But the Roadrunners knocked down their free throws to secure the victory.
UTA returns to action at 4 p.m. Saturday at Texas Hall against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.