Long Reaches Milestone as Cajuns Drill Troy 88-65
Shawn Long became the sixth player in Ragin' Cajuns basketball history to eclipse the 2,000 point scoring mark in a career and notched his 64th career double double as Louisiana defeated Troy 88-65 for their fourth straight win.
Long's first field goal came on a layup at the 13:11 mark for the milestone and the senior from Morgan City finished with a game high 20 points and 14 rebounds before a season high crowd of 6,064.
Bryce Washington scored 13 of his 16 points in the first half and Jay Hedgeman scored twelve points in just ten minutes of action for the Cajuns.
"We knew they would double (team) Shawn early," head coach Bob Marlin said, "and that opened some things up for Bryce early. Shawn's a good passer and found Bryce a couple of times"
Jordon Varnado led the Trojans (6-13, 1-7 Sun Belt) with 15 points on 7-12 shooting. Wesley Person, the Trojans' leading scorer, was held to eleven points, shooting just 4-10 from the field. John Walton III and Shawn Hopkins each scored ten points.
"That's a good shooting team and we did a good job against them," Marlin said. "We held (Jeremy)Hollimon to one field goal and he got 26 the other night."
The Cajuns scored 50 of their 88 points in the paint as Long, Washington and Hedgeman were a combined 18-26 from the field, as the Cajuns shot 57.1% after a blistering 71.4% (20-28) in the first half.
"We'll take those (offensive) numbers every night," Marlin said. We shot 57, 43 (from three point range) and 72 (from the free throw line) and those are winning numbers."
The score was tied at 18 with 9:56 to play in the first half, but the Cajuns went on a 14-2 run over the next 3:40 to take a 32-20 lead. Troy scored four straight points to cut the lead to eight, but the Cajuns went on another ten point spurt to increase the lead to 18 points and Troy never got closer than 13 in the second half, with Long scoring 15 points after intermission.
With the 20 points night, Long also became the sixth player in Sun Belt history to eclipse 2,000 points and needs just three points to pass Chad Kinch (UNC-Charlotte) for fifth place.
Although the Cajuns were outrebounded 35-29, Troy managed only six points off their 15 offensive rebounds.
The Cajuns had 18 assists and just eleven turnovers, with Jay Wright collecting seven assists to go with nine points. Wright had only one turnover in 33 minutes.
"Jay was really good tonight," Marlin said. He was focused and energized right from the beginning and played really good defense."
Marlin used fifteen players in the game, including Ragin' Cajuns football star Elijah McGuire who saw his first action of the season to the delight of those in attendance. McGuire registered one steal in five minutes of action.
"I really appreciate the crowd tonight, especially our students and the football team," Marlin said. I saw one of our offensive lineman, about 6-5 and 300 pounds. He came and congratulated us and I asked if he wanted to play basketball, too. We could use a guy like him inside."
The Cajuns continue their five game homestand next Thursday night against Texas State at 7:15 at the Cajundome.