Game of runs ends in 79-76 win for LA Tech over Samford

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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – In a game of big runs on Friday afternoon inside the Pete Hanna Center, Louisiana Tech ended up coming out on top with a 79-76 victory over previously unbeaten Samford.

The first run came from LA Tech (4-2) who jumped out to a 28-12 advantage after going on a 22-3 run. Samford (6-1) countered with a 23-5 run to help take a 35-33 lead into halftime.

The road Bulldogs countered back by coming out of the stanza with a 17-2 run to take a 50-37 lead. Up 69-53 with seven minutes to play, the home Bulldogs had one more big run in them. They got the score back to a one-possession game after putting together a 17-4 run, making it 73-70 with 1:47 to play.

From there, LA Tech was able to get just enough free throws (made only four of their last 10) and force its 23rd turnover of the game with two seconds left as Samford had the ball with a chance to tie.

Cobe Williams had 11 quick points, including three deep three-pointers, to help LA Tech take that early lead. After getting into foul trouble though, Samford forced turnovers and forced LA Tech into a six-minute scoring drought to take a two-point edge into the locker room.

It was then the combo of Isaiah Crawford and Keaston Willis that brought the road team back to life offensively. They combined to score 15 of the team’s first 17 points of the second half.

LA Tech kept its lead in double digits for the majority of the stanza, getting up by as much as 17 after Crawford drained his second triple to make it 62-45. Samford’s Ques Glover kept his team in it though, scoring 11 of his game-high 26 in the final three minutes.

With the ball, down three, with four seconds to go, Glover received the in-bounds pass looking for a chance to tie it, but the LA Tech pressure forced him to step out of bounds.

Williams finished with a team-high 25 points while Crawford scored a season-high 22 points and Willis tacked on 17. The trio made nine of the team’s 10 three-pointers.

Head coach Talvin Hester

“I am really pleased with our team. We talked about playing for 40 minutes right when we started preparing for this game. I felt like this was the first time this season we stayed locked in for the entirety of the game. It is never going to be perfect. That is not a reality. You just want to get out of a road game with a win and we did.”

• With the 79-76 win, LA Tech now leads the all-time series over Samford, 5-4.
• LA Tech won its third straight in the series and its first at Samford.
• LA Tech picked up its second straight road victory, marking the first time since 2018 the Bulldogs have won back-to-back road games during non-conference play.
• LA Tech handed Samford its first loss of the season (they came in as one of only 32 teams still undefeated in the country).
• The LA Tech defense forced a season-high 23 turnovers.They have forced 20+ turnovers in four of their six games.
• Cobe Williams led the Bulldogs in scoring for a third time this season, registering 25 points.He has scored 16+ points in all five of the games he has played in.
• Isaiah Crawford finished with a season-high 22 points.He also matched his season high with eight rebounds.
• Keaston Willis scored in double figures for a third straight game, tallying 17 points.He made three triples, giving him 15 on the season and 230 for his collegiate career.
• Jordan Crawford continued his streak of consecutive games with at least three assists.He has done so in all six games after recording a game-high five dimes.

LA Tech returns to the hardwood on Saturday for a neutral site game against Tennessee-Southern. Tipoff is set for 3 p.m. CT. No video stream will be available, but live stats as well as the live radio stream can be found on the LA Tech Athletics app.

For all the latest in Bulldog Basketball, follow them on Twitter (@LATechHoops), Instagram (@LATechHoops), and Facebook (LATechMBB).

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