New Orleans, LA – No. 5 LSU-Alexandria scored 19 of the game’s last 27 points over the last 5:30 to turn a four-point game into a 15 point victory, 83-68 over Southern New Orleans Thursday night at The Castle.
Trailing by three just about seven minutes into the game, Andre Gonzaque’s long ball started a 21-5 LSUA run that spanned 7:30 and culminated with a pair of Brandon Moss free throws to give the Generals their largest lead of the half at 24-11.
SUNO immediately answered LSUA’s run with an 18-6 run of their own to cut the deficit down to one on a Marcel Daniels basket with just over a minute remaining before the break. The Generals finished strong, scoring the last seven points of the half to go to the locker room with a 39-31 lead.
The two teams traded baskets for the first five-plus minutes of the second half until the Knights used a 6-0 run to pull within two points at 50-48 with just less than 13:30 to go in the game on a pair of Ezekiel Brown free throws.
LSUA maintained the advantage in the five-point range until the closing run. Up 64-60, Brandon Moss got to the free throw line, splitting the pair, to begin the 19-8 run. It started with the Generals scoring six-straight to bump the lead up to double-figures at 11 after an Evan Smith shot for a 71-60 lead.
The Knights whittled the lead back down to seven with two minutes left, but LSUA put the game out of reach with a 10-0 run, mostly at the free throw line. Matthew Thomas’s pair from the stripe with 54 seconds left gave the Generals their largest lead of the game at 17 points before SUNO got a bucket before the horn to close out the scoring.
“We’ve started the season strong defensively,” said LSUA head coach Larry Cordaro. “We’ve kept teams in the 60s or less, while on the road, and rebounded well. Offensively, we are sharing the ball well and playing very unselfishly. This team continues to learn and improve through these early games. We played a very tough SUNO team tonight and we look forward to a good rematch against them in The Fort for our home opener.”
Brandon Moss continued his hot start to the season with 26 points on just eight field goal attempts. Hayward Register hit five three-pointers to account for his 15 points. Jordin Williams finished with 12 points and six assists with no turnovers. Brian Sylvester finished one point shy of a double-double with nine points and 12 rebounds, and he and Moss evenly split LSUA’s ten blocks in the game.
LSUA (2-0) shot 46.2% from the field and 37.5% from above the arc, while holding SUNO (0-1) to 37.7% from the field and 35.7% from deep. The Generals took advantage of their advantage at the free throw line, making 26 of 29 from the stripe while he Knights were 17 of 23.
The #5 Generals finish their season-opening, three-game New Orleans trip Wednesday, November 9th against #25 Xavier of Louisiana. Tip-off against the Gold Rush is set for 7:00 PM at the Convocation Center.