ARKADELPHIA – Southern Arkansas was unable to overcome a late first half run from Ouachita Baptist on Saturday. The run propelled the Tigers to a halftime lead and an eventual 73-59 win over the Muleriders.
The Muleriders fall to 10-4 overall and 9-4 in Great American Conference Eastern Division play, while the victory is just the fourth of the season for Ouachita and first in four tries against the Muleriders.
Southern Arkansas senior forward Devante Brooks delivered the 26th double-double of his career on Saturday afternoon with 14 points and 13 rebounds.
Junior combo Jalen Brooks knocked down his first bucket of the afternoon, a three-pointer on an assist from junior guard Victor Ihrihri at the 10:25 mark, to put Southern Arkansas up 21-13. However, the Tigers answered with an 18-0 run, before a pair of free throws from Devante Brooks with 2:02 remaining in the first half ended the near 8:30 scoring drought.
Ouachita carried a 33-26 lead into the intermission and outscored SAU by seven points in the second half as the Tigers added another 40 points to their lead.
Ouachita outscored SAU inside 40-24 and the Tigers' bench delivered 37 points, including twenty in the second half. Additionally, Ouachita turned 16 Mulerider turnovers into 17 points, while Southern Arkansas managed just five points off of turnovers as the Tigers committed only seven turnovers.
Jalen Brooks finished with a double-double as well as he scored 14 points to go along with ten rebounds and a block. Blake Rogers led SAU with 15 points, five rebounds and an assist. Senior guard Aaron Lucas scored eight points, dished four assists, grabbed three rebounds and picked up two steals.
Southern Arkansas and Arkansas-Monticello, the top two teams in the league's eastern division meet on Monday in a pivotal game with the division crown and a top seed in March's conference tournament at stake. Tip-off from inside UAM's Steelman Fieldhouse is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.