Southern Miss overcomes slow start, uses strong second half to beat William Carey 75-42

HATTIESBURG, MS – Southern Miss looked like two completely different teams in the first and second half of its opening contest against William Carey. After a sluggish start, the Golden Eagles relied on a 23-0 run in the second half to beat the Crusaders 75-42.

“I was so proud of our guys, [for] really two games in a row. They play with tremendous effort and intensity on the defensive end and eventually, we talked about it at halftime [and] we did a better job of getting control on offense,” Head Coach Jay Ladner said.

Despite the quick pace of the opening minutes, neither team could generate much offense. The Crusaders led 8-4 at the first media timeout. The only thing they were doing better than Southern Miss was shooting the ball. They were 50% from the floor, and USM was 29%.

“They did some things on defense that we weren’t quite ready for, and it took us a little while to adjust to it. They had not played [and] they had basically a new team, so that had a lot to do with our offensive struggles,” Ladner said.

In the next several minutes of the contest, neither team could get any momentum on the offensive side of the ball. Southern Miss tied the game at eight with ten minutes left to play in the first half. Neither team could consistently score the basketball, and there were more turnovers and shot clock violations than shots made in the final few minutes of the first half.

“They were mixing their defenses up. They were in one-three-one that we weren’t ready for. But, of course, you have got to give them credit. When they were in one-three-one, they did a great job. They caught us off guard, but I thought at halftime, we were

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