Combs Returns To The Starting Lineup In A Big Mean Green Win
Men's Basketball Defeats Delaware State, 73-40
DENTON -- With Jeremy Combs back in the starting lineup, the Mean Green men's basketball team put together a well-rounded and dominating performance in a 73-40 win against Delaware State on Thursday night in the Super Pit.
"I thought our guys set the tone defensively," said North Texas head coach Tony Benford. "I thought we shared the ball well. I'm really pleased with the team effort."
Returning from injury, Combs looked like the Combs from old; running the court and making plays on offense and defense. The forward led the Mean Green for the second straight game in scoring with 16 points on 6-of-9 shooting from the field. He was one rebound shy of his second-straight double-double with nine.
"I am feeling really good and I am getting better each game," Combs said. "I am still doing rehab every day to get stronger. I felt like we set the tone defensively and my teammates gave me open looks near the basket."
Combs and the Mean Green dominated all facets of the game. North Texas shot 44 percent from field, while holding the Hornets to just 12 field goals in the game. The Mean Green held the edge in rebounding and turned the ball over a season-low five times.
Combs and Allante Holston combined to score the team's opening 10 points, leading the Mean Green to a 10-2 start. North Texas kept the foot on the pedal, extending that lead to 17-2, holding the Hornets without a field goal for nearly eight minutes.
North Texas gave up most of that lead as DSU went on a 12-0 over the next five minutes to draw within three points, 17-14. North Texas scored the next seven points to get the lead back up to double-digits. With 4:51 left in the first half, Combs forced a steal at the top of the key and ran the court for the layup to put the Mean Green ahead by 10 points, 24-14.
North Texas opened the second half strong with a 12-2 run to put the game out of reach. A layup by Shane Temara gave North Texas a 21-point lead, 44-23, with 13:23 left to play. The lead grew to 30 points at the eight-minute mark as DSU's shooting woes continued.
In his fourth start this season, Holston provided strong offense with a season-high 12 points, including a dunk to start off the game and two more in the final few minutes of the game.
The Mean Green takes to the road with a game against Sam Houston on Saturday, Dec. 17 at 6:30 p.m.
Mean Green Quick Hitters
North Texas started its seventh different lineup in the opening nine games with Jeremy Combs Deckie Johnson, J-Mychal Reese, Allante Holston and Rickey Brice, Jr.
The Mean Green are 5-2 at the Super Pit this season and will have two more home games in the month of December.
North Texas had a season-low six turnovers
Jeremy Combs started his first game since the Nov. 20 game against Drexel.
Jeremy Combs scored in double-figures for the 40th game in his career.
The Mean Green defense held the Hornets to an opponent-low six field goals in the first half and a season-low 12 field goals in the game.
The Mean Green defense held the Hornets to a season-low 40 points.
The Mean Green defense has held two opponents this season to 45 points or less. (Nov. 30 against Texas College and Delaware State.
Rickey Brice Jr. was just shy of a double-double with 11 rebounds and nine points.
The men's basketball team is holding a clinic on Saturday, Dec. 10 at 9 a.m. at the Physical Education Building on campus.