CORPUS CHRISTI, Tx – Marlain Veal scored 27 points and drill seven three-pointers to lead the reigning Southland Conference champion Southeastern Louisiana men’s basketball team past Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, 64-58, Wednesday night at Dugan Wellness Center. The Lions (10-13, 6-4 Southland) got 17 points from senior Moses Greenwood and 11 points from Keith Charleston to help hold off the Islanders. SLU picked up their first victory in program history at Corpus Christi (1-7).
“That was the best environment for a conference game I’ve seen,” said SLU fifth-year head basketball Jay Ladner. “That’s what college basketball should be like every night and If I were them I would play in that gym every night. And for our guys to come in and get the win in that environment says a lot about how far this team has come.”
A&M-Corpus Christi (9-13, 4-5 Southland) had four players in double figures led by Elijah Schmidt with 12 points and 13 rebounds. Kareem South, Tre Gray and Tony Lewis each had 10. Despite being outrebounded 33-24 and shooting just 19-for-46, SLU shot 18-for-22 from the free throw line and committed just 11 turnovers. The Lions trailed 34-32 at halftime despite Veal knocking down five three-pointers in the first half. Southeastern took control early in the second half as they came out of the break on a 16-5 run taking a 48-39 lead. SLU maintained the lead for much of the second half leading 55-47 with 8:22 to go. The Lions’ offense stalled going 5:36 without scoring until Charleston scored on a lay-up with 2:46 remaining. After a South scored on a lay-up, Greenwood and Julien hit four consecutive clutch free throws to give to the Lions a 61-56 lead with 36 seconds left to seal the win.
“We were spectacular at the line tonight especially when it counted,” said Ladner. “We had to handle a lot of pressure tonight throughout the game and maybe three weeks ago we lose this game. But this team is starting to figure out what it takes.”
Veal became the SLU all-time leader in games played (121). The New Orleans, Louisiana native, became the third player in program history to score over 1,500 points (1,526). Greenwood is second all-time in games played with 120. The Sharon, Mississippi native is ninth all-time with 1,299 points passing Amir Abdur Rahim. The Lions continued their ‘road warrior’ trend as they improved to 4-1 on the road in Southland games. Next up for the Lions is a trip to Conway, Arkansas to face Central Arkansas (10-13, 5-5 Southland) Saturday at 4 p.m.
Article courtesy of Southeastern Sports Information Department.
“It certainly doesn’t get any easier,” said Ladner. “This is one tough road trip, not only playing Corpus Christi and Central Arkansas, but playing them back to back and making these road trips.”
SLU will be looking for payback after losing a heartbreaker to UCA Jan. 5 at home, 73-71, when Central Arkansas’s Mathew Mondesir tipped in an offensive rebound with less than a second left.