The Seattle University men's basketball team used early offense and stifling defense throughout the night to defeat the UTSA Roadrunners, 53-37, Saturday night in Western Athletic Conference action at the UTSA Convocation Center.
Chad Rasmussen (University Place, Wash.) and Prince Obasi (Reseda, Calif.) scored seven points apiece in the first six-and-a-half minutes as the Redhawks raced out to a 17-3 lead. A jumper by Edrico McGregor with 9:48 left in the first half would be the final field goal by UTSA until the halftime buzzer, as Rasmussen hit two three-pointers to help Seattle U go on a 10-3 run to go into the locker room ahead, 29-11.
Rasmussen's fifth three-pointer of the game, followed by a basket by Deshaun Sunderhaus (Conyers, Ga.), extended Seattle U's lead to its largest of the night at 24 (42-18). UTSA was unable to come any closer than the final margin as the Redhawks held the Roadrunners to 22.6 percent shooting from the field.
Rasmussen tied his season high with 19 points, while Clarence Trent (Tacoma, Wash.) finished with nine points and a team-high eight rebounds. Allen Tate (Hobbs, N.M.) made significant contributions throughout the night, collecting two points, seven rebounds, three assists, two steals, and a blocked shot, and Jack Crook (Manchester, U.K.) also pulled down seven rebounds as Seattle U won the rebounding battle, 38-34.
"This was one of the best defensive efforts I have ever been around, especially in the first half," Seattle U head coach Cameron Dollar said. "We executed our game plan as to how we wanted to defend them, and then we finished it off with a rebound. The credit goes to the guys - they were focused from the start and got their hands on a lot of balls defensively. Plus we did what we have been doing on offense, so a good night all around for us."
For UTSA (8-20, 3-13 WAC), Jeromie Hill scored 13 of his 15 points in the second half, after Seattle U had established its lead, while Kannon Burrage also scored 15 points, 12 of them after halftime as they were the only two UTSA players to make a field goal in the second half. Michael Hale III, who scored 35 points in UTSA's victory at KeyArena, shot 1-of-11 from the field as he finished with three points, four rebounds, and five assists.
As a team, Seattle U shot 43.2 percent (19-of-44) from the field, including 7-of-13 from behind the three-point line, and 72.7 percent (8-of-11) from the free throw line. The Redhawks committed just 13 turnovers as they snapped a six-game losing streak heading into the final week of the regular season.
Seattle University (8-19, 3-14 WAC) faces CSU Bakersfield in the second annual ShoWare College Showcase at the ShoWare Center in Kent, Wash., Wednesday, March 6, starting at 7 p.m. Tickets are on sale through the ShoWare Center Box Office.