Smart's Career-High Lifts Mean Green At San Diego In OT
Roosevelt Smart Scored A Career-high 31 Points
SAN DIEGO, CA - After a late San Diego three-point sent the game into overtime, sophomore Roosevelt Smart scored five of his career-high 31 points in overtime to lead North Texas in a thriller on the road at San Diego 86-83 Saturday night.
"Proud of the way our players battled tonight and happy to come away with a huge road victory," head coach Grant McCasland said. "We had some great performances from Roosevelt Smart and Ryan Woolridge."
With North Texas leading 77-74 with 18 seconds left in regulation, San Diego's Olin Carter, who was the hero a year ago at the Super Pit, drained another clutch three-pointer to tie the game at 77-77. Smart got the final look a turnaround jumper but it fell just short as time expired.
"I felt like we lost a little momentum heading into overtime but Woolridge kept the team excited in the huddle by saying we were going to win this game," McCasland said.
In overtime, Woolridge gave North Texas the lead with two free throws in the first 48 seconds of the extra period. San Diego tied the game at 79-79 after a layup from Isaiah Wright. Smart answered with a three-pointer with 2:35 remaining.
The Toreros cut the lead to one after two free throws by Tyler Williams but Smart made another jumper to push the lead back to three points at 84-81 with 34 seconds left.
After free throws by both teams, North Texas held an 86-83 lead but a steal from Yauhen Massalski led to a final three-point attempt that went off the backboard to end the game.
Smart finished with a career-high 31 points off seven three-pointers, one off tying the school record. Smart played 44 of 45 minutes and grabbed five rebounds. Sophomore Ryan Woolridge played his best game of the season off 20 points, seven assists and six rebounds. Woolridge was a solid 8-for-10 from the free throw line and played all 45 minutes.
Sophomore A.J. Lawson added 14 points and grabbed nine rebounds. Senior Shane Temara had nine points and four rebounds.
North Texas settled in defensively in the first half leading to a 37-35 lead on the road at San Diego. The Mean Green held the Toreros without a field goal for the last six minutes of the first half. Smart lead the team with 11 points off three three-pointers.
The Mean Green started with a 9-5 lead off a layup from senior Shane Temara at the 17:44 mark. San Diego responded with a 7-3 run off a jumper by Olin Carter to tie the game at 12-12.
The Toreros built their largest lead to seven points at 28-21 with six minutes left in the half. North Texas quickly cut the lead to two points off a 5-0 run capped by a transition layup by Smart at the 4:40 mark.
UNT ended the half by outscoring San Diego 11-7, including two three-pointers from Smart. Sophomore guard A.J. Lawson added eight points and six rebounds in the first half.
In the second half, Woolridge and Smart carried North Texas offensively scoring 28 of the 40 points.
The Mean Green came out firing pushing their lead to nine points at 49-40 at the 15:14 mark off a three-pointer by Smart.
San Diego cut the lead to one point after a 13-5 run capped by a Williams three-pointer with 10:53 remaining. Temara answered getting a friendly bounce off the rim on a three-pointer to make the score 57-53.
North Texas continued to have an answer after San Diego got within two points at 72-70 with 1:55 left but Smart drilled another three-pointer to quiet the crowd.
Carter would eventually hit the game-tying three-pointer with 18 seconds left but the Mean Green outscored the Toreros 9-to-6 in overtime to pick up the win.
North Texas will finishes the non-conference schedule with a road game at Georgetown on Wednesday, Dec. 20, at 6 p.m. (CT).
Mean Green Quick Hitters
North Texas starters for the seventh-straight game: Ryan Woolridge, Roosevelt Smart, A.J. Lawson, Zachary Simmons, Shane Temara
Roosevelt Smart scored in double-figures for the 10th time, including eight straight
A.J. Lawson scored in double-figures for the seventh time this season
Ryan Woolridge scored in double-figures for the seventh time this season
North Texas improved to 3-0 all-time in San Diego
86 points is the most San Diego has allowed all season
Mean Green snapped a seven-game road losing streak