Men’s basketball takes down top-ranked Little Rock, falls to Arkansas State in OT

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(Photo/ Pawan Khanal)

Junior guard Darian Adams led all scorers with 18 points in last Thursday’s 76-71 win over Little Rock, a team thatw was undefeated in Sun Belt Conference play heading into the matchup.

Kennedy Roy

Staff Writer

The Troy Trojans fell 76-68 in overtime to the Arkansas State Red Wolves at First National Bank Arena in Jonesboro, Arkansas, despite going on a 26-12 run over an 11-minute stretch in the second half. 

This loss snapped a two-game winning streak for the Trojans.

The Trojans, who led the Sun Belt Conference contest 57-47 with 5:39 remaining, couldn’t get it done as they were outscored 29-11 over the final 5:39 of regulation and the five-minute extra session. 

The Trojans were plagued by 23 turnovers.  

 Junior Darian Adams scored 20 points (ties career high), while Tahj Small added a career-best 11 points on 4-of-5 shooting.

 The Trojans (7-11, 3-4 Sun Belt) and Red Wolves were neck and neck throughout most of the contest, with neither side taking more than a two-point lead over the first 10 minutes of action.

 Troy went into halftime trailing 28-26, marking the first time since the Trojans played Jacksonville State on Dec. 11 the team trailed at the half.

The contest was very close going down the stretch, and after a pair of Desmond Williams’ free throws tied the game at 59-59, junior Nick Stampley took his fourth charge of the game to give Troy possession with 90 seconds left and the game tied.

 After a missed 3-pointer by Williams, Arkansas State was able to draw a foul with 39 seconds left. Arkansas State went on to make both free throws to take a 61-59 lead.

 The next possession, Adams drove the lane, absorbed contact from an ASU defender and made a tough 10-foot “and-one” floater. Although the guard missed his and-one free throw attempt, the play was gritty. 

Arkansas State corralled the loose ball and advanced the ball into the frontcourt before calling timeout with 14 seconds left.

 After the time out, Troy forced a contested jumper that the Red Wolves missed. 

After the miss, Stampley secured the rebounded and passed it to Adams, who heaved a 40-foot last-second shot that hit the rim and missed.

 In overtime, Arkansas State scored the first 10 points of the period, holding Troy scoreless over the first 4:06 of overtime to take a 71-61 lead.

 The Trojans cut the Arkansas State advantage to just six (74-68) with nine seconds left, but Caleb Fields iced the game with a pair of free throws.

Arkansas State won the game 76-68, and the Trojans fell to a record of 7-11 on the season.

 Troy returns to action Thursday when first-place Georgia Southern visits Trojan Arena. Tip-off is scheduled for 6 p.m.

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