Privateers complete perfect weekend with win over city foe Gold Rush

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MARK SLESSINGER POSTGAME AUDIO

NEW ORLEANS – A trio of Privateers scored in double-figures as New Orleans Basketball (3-4) completed a perfect two days on the court defeating the Xavier Gold Rush (10-3) 79-62 on Family Night in two schools’ second ever meeting at Lakefront Arena on Saturday night.

Coming off a double-double last night Jaylen Key had another strong effort with new career-highs in points (17) and assists (5). Ahren Freeman had the best game of his young career with personal bests in points (14), made field goals (7), rebounds (5) and steals (2).

Bryson Robinson was on fire, connecting on 5-of-9 field goals and including 4-of-8 from beyond the arc. The Texas native finished with 14 points and a pair of steals as the third Privateer in double-figures.

FIRST HALF
Ranked No. 16 in the NAIA, the Gold Rush got off to a 6-3 start before 12-3 run by the Privateer gave the good guys the lead for good. Robinson hit two of his first three three-point attempts while the Privateer’s active hands forced seven Gold Rush turnovers in the first 10 minutes of play to spark the run.

A layup by Cameron Wells and a jumper by William Loyd cut the Privateer lead to three just three before Robinson took over again, first connecting on his third three-point bucket of the night, and then taking a loose ball back the other way for a thunderous dunk with 7:34 to play in the first half.

Just under four minutes later Key threw down a two-hand dunk off an alley-oop pass from Rodney Carson Jr. to give the Privateers a 35-26 lead.

Both teams shot well in the first half with the Gold Rush connecting on 52.4% of their shots led by Cameron Dumas who had six points at the half. The Privateers shot 45.9% in the first half and were led by Jaylen who finished the opening half with 14 points on 6-of-7 shooting, while Robinson also finished in double figures with 12 points on 4-of-6 shooting including a trio of three-point buckets. The difference in the first half was the Privateer defense, which created 15 points off of 11 turnovers forced.

SECOND HALF
Coming out of the break with an 11-point lead the Privateers kept the pressure up on their local rivals extending their lead to 18 points – 62-42 after another alley-oop from Damion Rosser to Ahren Freeman, and a long Rosser jump shot. The Privateers would take their largest lead of the night at 66-44 following a jump shot by Freeman with just under nine minutes to play.

Jahmel Myers had a strong second half off the bench making both his shots from the field and hitting 2-of-3 free throws in six minutes off the bench.

The Privateer defense forced another eight XULA turnovers in the second half, finishing with 19 forced on the night. Robinson and Freeman finished with a pair of steals each, while Rosser, Lamont Berzat each had one as well.

NOTES
– The Privateers are now 10-4 in regular season non-tournament games in back-to-back days, including 5-1 on the second day of back-to-backs.

COACH SLESSINGER
“I was really our team with how they approached the game, how they executed. I thought that we answered every time we needed to make a shot. I thought we did a phenomenal job of answering at the right times. Really proud of them, and their consistency.”

NEXT UP
The Privateers return to Lakefront Arena for a doubleheader on December 14. The women’s team will face Tougaloo at 4:00 p.m. while the men will take on Williams Baptist 45 minute after the conclusion of the women’s game. The game can be heard locally on NASH 106.1 FM with Jude Young and Cory Dixon on the call, or on the TuneIn App. Fans can also watch the game for free on the Privateer Sports Network on UNOPrivateers.com. Celebrate Holiday Hoops at Lakefront Arena with a discount on Tickets with the donation of a toy before the game.

SOCIAL MEDIA
Fans are encouraged to follow @PrivateersMBB on Twitter, @PrivateersMBB on Instagram, like /PrivateersMBB on Facebook and subscribe to the UNOPrivateers YouTube channel.

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