JONESBORO, Ark. - For the first time in 30 games, the North Texas basketball team couldn't make a halftime lead stand up, falling to Arkansas State, 63-47, at the Convocation Center.
The Mean Green (17-10, 6-8 Sun Belt) led by a single point at the break, 26-25, and won the pivotal rebounding battle, but a season-high 20 turnovers were simply too much to overcome. Arkansas State (16-14, 10-5 Sun Belt) improves to 12-0 at home this year and held NT to a season low 47 points.
George Ofufuwa was nearly unstoppable in the low block for North Texas, which owned a 42-37 edge on the boards. The senior grabbed his 31st career double-double with 12 points and 14 rebounds.
It only took ASU's Martavius Adams 10 seconds to erase the Mean Green's one-point halftime lead with a pair of free throws. The two squads would trade the lead seven more times over the second half's first five minutes alone.
NT turned the ball over on three straight crucial possessions and sparked an 11-1 ASU run that put the Red Wolves ahead 47-40 with eight minutes to play. NT would never recover.
The night couldn't have started any better for White and the Mean Green. The senior splashed home a 3-pointer on NT's first possession, and Odufuwa made the lead 5-0 after a pair of free throws just seconds later.
NT stymied the Red Wolves in the paint, forcing ASU to hit just one of its first 13 shots. An Odufuwa hook from the left block capped the NT run at 11-2.
A pair of Martavius Adams free throws made it a 1-point affair with five minutes remaining in the half, but Odufuwa and Alonzo Edwards hit a pair of jumpers in the paint to vault the NT lead back to five.
Not to be denied, ASU whittled the lead to a single point with just over a minute to play and that's how it stood at the break; NT 26, ASU 25.
North Texas returns to action on Saturday for Senior Day. Tip off against the Denver Pioneers is slated for 7 p.m. following a tribute to this year's senior class.