February 2, 2013

First half effort not enough as Tech falls to Belmont on the road, 74-52

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Tennessee Tech men's basketball team couldn't quite play spoiler on Homecoming night for the Belmont Bruins, as a strong first-half effort wasn't enough to overcome the OVC's top team. Belmont tightened up its game and went on to win 74-52.

In the first half, the Golden Eagles played a stingy defense, holding the OVC's most potent offense to just 24 points and 38 percent shooting.They also held one of the league's best scorers in Ian Clark to a paltry five points in the opening 20 minutes.

Tech came out of the halftime break with the same intensity, but the Bruins proved exactly why they are one of the nation's top offenses. Belmont shot a scorching 61.9 percent from the field in the second half, including nearly 67 percent from the 3-point arc.

Four Bruins players scored in double figures, including Kerron Johnson, JJ Mann, Ian Clark, and Trevor Noack. Noack led the Belmont offense with 19 points.

For the second straight contest, junior forward Dennis Ogbe torched the nets, scoring a career-high 19 points in the contest, including the first 11 of the game for the Golden Eagles. He also ripped down seven rebounds. He connected on seven of his nine field goal attempts of the game, hitting 3-of-4 from downtown.

Senior guard Jud Dillard put together his eighth double-double of the season, pouring in 17 points on top of 10 rebounds. The Atlanta, Ga. native had eight double-doubles all of last season.

Redshirt freshman Lanerryl Johnson scored 11 points in the contest, marking his first double-digit scoring effort in the past four games. Terrell Barnes, the other senior member of the Golden Eagles, pulled down a season-high seven rebounds on the night.

Sophomore guard Javon McKay dished out a season-high four assists in just 13 minutes of action while freshman big man Anthony Morse added two more blocks to his season tally. He now has 23 on the year.

The Golden Eagles will have a week off, not playing again until Saturday, Feb. 9. Tech will return home to host Jacksonville State in a 7:30 p.m. CST tilt.