Lions reach double-digit win mark in Southland with win at McNeese
LAKE CHARLES, La. – Junior forward Moses Greenwood and junior guard Marlain Veal had 20 points apiece as Southeastern Louisiana held off a second-half rally by McNeese for a 74-67 Southland Conference win in Burton Coliseum Saturday afternoon.
Southeastern (16-10, 10-3 Southland) reached the 10-win mark in conference play for the first time since 2012-13.
Veal just missed a double-double with nine rebounds. He went 7-for-7 from the line and added five assists with no turnovers.
Senior forward Jordan Capps added 15 points and seven rebounds for the Lions who shot 43.3 percent from the field and hit nine 3-pointers.
Quatarrius Wilson led McNeese (8-14, 5-7 Southland) with 20 points and 14 rebounds while LaBarrius Hill tossed in 12 points. The Cowboys shot 45.9 percent and out-rebounded Southeastern 38-34.
McNeese cut a 13-point Southeastern lead to 63-62 on a Kalob Ledoux 3 with 3:38 remaining. Greenwood scooped in the lane to push the lead back to three before Jarren Greenwood hit the second of two free throws to make it 65-63 with 2:18 left.
Greenwood hit two free throws for Southeastern with 2:06 remaining. After a Jarren Greenwood layup, Veal rushed in to rebound a miss by junior guard Keith Charleston. Veal was fouled later in the possession and made two free throws for a 69-65 lead with 38 seconds left. Senior guard Joshua Filmore then tipped a rebound off a missed 3 by Ledoux to Greenwood who was fouled with 22 seconds. Greenwood would hit one free throw and Veal four the rest of the way.
Southeastern hit seven 3-pointers in taking a 40-30 halftime lead. McNeese cut the margin to seven on a Greenwood jumper with 17:40 left. But the Lions came back with a 10-4 run to take their biggest lead at 53-40 on a Charleston jumper in the paint at the 14:50 mark.
Jacob Ledoux hit a 3 to pull the Cowboys to within 55-47 at the 10:44 mark. After senior guard Jabbar Singleton assisted on layups by Capps and Greenwood to push the lead back to 59-47 with 9:15 left, McNeese went on a 15-4 run over the next 5:37.
Veal hit a pair of 3s and Filmore and Singleton had one each as Southeastern jumped out to a 12-5 lead at the 14:45 mark. McNeese responded with a 7-1 run to pull to within 13-12 on a Wilson 3 with 11:38 left. After senior forward James Currington hit a jumper on the right baseline, the Cowboys used an 8-0 surge to take a 20-15 lead on a Jacob Ledoux layup with 7:42 remaining.
Veal took a steal in to tie the game at 24 with 5:10 left. Filmore hit a 3 from the left wing to put the Lions ahead 27-25 with 4:24 remaining. After Wilson tied it with a jumper, Southeastern went on an 11-0 run over the next 1:54. Greenwood converted a three-point play and Veal and freshman forward Brandon Gonzalez followed with 3s. Veal then blocked a shot and found Greenwood downcourt to make it 38-27 at the 2:03 mark.
Southeastern moved to 6-1 on the road in Southland play. The Lions have eight road wins overall for the first time since 2004-05.
Southeastern is now 13-8 under head coach Jay Ladner when playing a team for the second time in the regular season. The Lions lost to McNeese 71-62 at home earlier this season.
Southeastern cut McNeese’s lead in the series to 65-45 with its fourth victory in the past five meetings.
Veal also had five assists to move into second on the Southeastern single-season list with 160 assists. He is also tied for fourth with 58 steals this season.
The Southeastern coaching staff wore Autism Speaks puzzle piece pins to raise awareness and increase understanding and acceptance of people with autism as part of the 5th Annual Autism Speaks Coaches Powering Forward initiative.
Southeastern returns to the University Center Wednesday to host New Orleans at 7 p.m.
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