Home Sports Men’s college basketball: Louisiana Tech gets road win over SFA

Men’s college basketball: Louisiana Tech gets road win over SFA

by Russell Hedges

Louisiana Tech Athletic Communications

NACOGDOCHES, Texas — It took two hours and 23 minutes, but as the final horn blew Louisiana Tech came out on top, defeating Stephen F. Austin by a final score of 56-49 on Tuesday night inside William R. Johnson Coliseum.

At times, it felt more like a football game than a basketball game. And a defensive one at that, pitting two of the top defensive teams in the country against one another.

LA Tech’s (7-2) defense was the one that prevailed, holding SFA (5-4) to just 21.9 percent shooting (14-of-64) and only one made three-pointer. But free throws played a huge role in the final outcome as there were a combined 51 fouls called, resulting in a combined 68 free throw attempts.

The first breakaway by the Bulldogs came in the first half when they went on an 11-0 run to take a 19-10 lead with seven minutes to go in the stanza. LA Tech got up by as much as 11, but SFA’s lone three-pointer went down in the final minute to make it a 29-21 game at halftime.

The Lumberjacks could only muster five made field goals in the entire second half. But free throws, free throws, and more free throws kept the home team in the contest. Four straight makes at the charity stripe cut their deficit down to 36-32 with 13:56 left.

LA Tech kept SFA at bay though, going on an 12-3 run after four straight points by Daniel Batcho to build their largest lead of the game at 48-35 with 7:17 remaining.

The Bulldogs made just one field goal the remainder of the game, but their perimeter defense and rim protection by Batcho, who had four blocks, kept them in it. The Lumberjacks made just three field goals during the same stretch, and got to within three at 52-49 with still 1:06 to go.

After making just 18 of 32 free throws, Dravon Mangum and Jordan Crawford both stepped up and sank a pair at the foul line to secure the road win.

Isaiah Crawford had a game-high 19 points while Batcho secured his fourth double-double of the season with 11 points and 11 rebounds. The ‘Dogs committed a season-high 20 turnovers, but SFA was only able to turn them into 15 points.  

Head coach Talvin Hester

On the win …
“We always talk about packing our defense and I thought we brought it tonight. We were unbelievable guarding the ball, unbelievable at the rim. I am so proud of our guys.”

On getting in transition …
“Transition points was the key to this game. Stephen F. Austin is unbelievable in halfcourt defense, but we felt like in transition is when we could score on them. We were jogging the ball up too much into the teeth of their defense. That made it hard. When we got it moving, started advancing the ball, we started to get easier shots.”

On adjustments made in game …
“When your guards are having trouble, you can have Isaiah Crawford bring the ball up. There are not many forwards in the country that can stay in front of him. We just adjusted and got the ball in his hands. His ability to make plays for others, draw attention, he was really good tonight.”

On not being denied at the end …
“The game got down to three and Dravon Mangum came off the bench cold and hits two free throws. I thought we guarded really well. When Daniel Batcho fouled out, I thought it left us exposed at the rim. We knew we needed to do something. We needed to make free throws, contest them at the rim, and secured rebounds.”


  • With the win, the series is now tied between LA Tech and Stephen F. Austin, 8-8.
  • LA Tech improves to 7-2 on the season. It marks the eighth time in the last 12 seasons that the Bulldogs have won at least seven of their first nine games.
  • The Bulldogs won their fourth straight over the Lumberjacks in Nacogdoches, Texas.
  • LA Tech held SFA to just 21.9 percent shooting from the field, which is the lowest field goal percentage of any opponent since 2010.
  • Isaiah Crawford had a game-high 19 points, marking the 20th time in his career he has been the leading scorer for the Bulldogs.
  • Daniel Batcho registered his fourth double-double of the season with 11 points and 11 rebounds. He also tallied a season-high four blocks.

LA Tech is back inside the Thomas Assembly Center on Saturday, Dec. 9 to take on long-time rival UL-Lafayette. Tipoff is set for 2 p.m. CT and will be broadcast on ESPN+.

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