The Seattle University men's basketball team used a 1-3-1 trapping zone defense to climb its way back within one possession, but Louisiana Tech made enough free throws down the stretch to hold on for an 85-72 victory Friday night in the first game of the Irvine subregional of the 2K Sports Classic Benefiting Coaches vs. Cancer at the Bren Events Center on the UC Irvine campus.
Down 61-45 with 11 minutes remaining in the second half, Seattle U worked its way back into the contest, forcing several Louisiana Tech turnovers during a 10-0 run that brought the Redhawks within six with just over seven minutes left. Sterling Carter (Seattle, Wash.) hit a three-pointer and a layup to cut the deficit to three at 70-67, but that would be as close as the Redhawks would get.
Carter led Seattle U with 22 points, while Aaron Broussard (Federal Way, Wash.) finished with 11 points, eight rebounds, and four steals. Mark McLaughlin (Seattle, Wash.) contributed 10 points, four rebounds, two blocked shots, and two steals, Cervante Burrell (Sacramento, Calif.) collected eight points and five assists, and Alex Jones (Phoenix, Ariz.) also scored eight points in the game.
Seattle U jumped out to the early lead at 13-6, but Louisiana Tech used back-to-back three-pointers by DeAndre Brown and Brandon Gibson to start a 17-4 run that put the Bulldogs ahead, 23-17, with 11:05 left in the first half. The Redhawks responded with an 11-2 scoring run to go back on top, 28-25, but Gibson scored seven of Louisiana Tech's final eight points of the half to help the Bulldogs take the halftime lead, 40-36.
Louisiana Tech (3-1) was paced by Olu Ashaolu, who notched a double-double with 22 points and 11 rebounds. Brown finished with 18 points, five rebounds, seven assists, and two steals, Gibson accumulated 13 points, eight rebounds, three blocked shots, and four steals, and Kenyon McNeaill also scored 13 points, plus he pulled down four rebounds and dished out five assists.
For the game, Seattle U shot 45.9 percent (28-of-61) from the field, including 4-of-17 from behind the three-point line, and 63.2 percent (12-of-19) from the free throw line. Meanwhile, Louisiana Tech shot 51.6 percent (32-of-62) from the field, including 7-of-17 from behind the three-point arc, and 70 percent (14-of-20) from the charity stripe. Louisiana Tech won the rebounding battle, 39-33, but committed 23 turnovers, while the Redhawks committed 19 turnovers during the contest.
Seattle University (1-4) continues play in the 2K Sports Classic Benefiting Coaches vs. Cancer Saturday, Nov. 20, facing host school UC Irvine beginning at approximately 7:30 p.m. Dave Grosby and Gary Hill, Jr., will broadcast the game live on 710 ESPN Seattle, with the pregame show beginning shortly before tipoff.