North Texas Falls Short At Western Kentucky, 74-63
Final 2016-17 Game At Marshall On March 4
BOWLING GREEN, KY - The North Texas men's basketball team fell behind early and its comeback bid fell short on the road at Western Kentucky, 74-63, Thursday night inside E.A. Diddle arena.
The Mean Green (8-21, 2-15 C-USA) battled against Western Kentucky getting within five points in the second half but graduate transfer Pancake Thomas wouldn't be denied with a game-high 23 points off 7-for-13 shooting. Senior guard J-Mychal Reese led North Texas in scoring with 14 points (4-for-5 from downtown) and grabbed five rebounds.
Freshman guard Ryan Woolridge had a solid game with nine points, five rebounds, and six assists. Graduate transfer Derail Green finished with nine points and sophomore center Rickey Brice Jr. had six points off the bench.
North Texas had a tough shooting night going 24-for-61 (39.3 percent) from the field and just 9-of-27 (33.3 percent) from the three-point line. The Mean Green only committed 11 turnovers and moved the ball around with 12 assists.
In the second half, the Mean Green started to chip away after a three-pointer from Woolridge to make the score 48-39 with 17:39 remaining. North Texas went on a 7-2 run capped by a three-pointer from sophomore Ja'Michael Brown.
With 9:52 left, the Mean Green cut WKU's lead to five at 58-53 but Thomas answered with a three-pointer to push the lead back to eight points.
The Hilltoppers put the game out of reach with a 9-0 run late in the second half to seal the victory. North Texas didn't quit but came up short 74-63 in the end.
WKU took a 46-36 halftime lead against North Texas. Thomas led the way for Western Kentucky with 16 points, including a perfect 5-for-5 from the free throw line. Anton Walters added 12 points and grabbed five rebounds.
Reese scored nine points and shot a perfect 3-for-3 from downtown. Reese's second three-pointer in the first half clinched his 1,000th career collegiate point between his time at Texas A&M and North Texas.
The game started out with lead changes left and right. The Mean Green tied the game at 12-12 off a layup from Brice, Jr., but Thomas went on a mini 5-0 run to pull ahead 17-12.
Brice, Jr. hit another jumper to get within three points at 19-16. Western Kentucky went on a 15-5 run to take a 34-21 lead with 6:36 left in the half.
North Texas continued to battle after Reese nailed a three-pointer to make the score 39-34 but WKU ended the half on a 7-2 run.
North Texas will finish the 2016-17 season with a road game at Marshall on Saturday, March 4 at 6 p.m. (CT).
Mean Green Quick Hitters
North Texas used the same starting lineup for the ninth-straight game (Woolridge, Lawson, Reese, Temara, Green)
Senior J-Mychal Reese scored his 1,000th career point between Texas A&M and North Texas
Woolridge started for the ninth-straight game
Brice, Jr. grabbed a team-best eight rebounds
Green started for the 11th-straight game
Lawson started for the seventh-straight game
Temara started for the 12-straight game
Senior guard J-Mychal Reese has started 22 games in a row