Nov. 12, 2007
HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Senior Gjio Bain narrowly missed his first career triple-double, and Southern Miss let its defense dictate play as the Golden Eagles opened the 2007-08 season with an 92-45 victory over Belhaven Monday night at Reed Green Coliseum.
"We did a nice job of getting in front of them, which tired them out," said Southern Miss head coach Larry Eustachy. "We did a real nice job on their top seven or eight guys. (Gjio) was a big reason we held them to 20% shooting. When we did get beat, he rotated over and blocked the shot. So I thought defensively, we played a great game."
This is the second straight year that the Golden Eagles opened their season with a victory over the Blazers. Last year, Southern Miss defeated Belhaven, 63-38.
Bain scored ten points, while recording career-highs with eight blocks and 16 rebounds, including 11 in the first half. Joining Bain in double-digits for Southern Miss was Craig Craft with a game-high 19 points, Jeremy Wise with 18 and Courtney Beasley with 12.
Southern Miss forced 17 turnovers in the contest, turning them into 25 points. The Golden Eagles also dominated down low, outscoring the Blazers 38-14.
The Golden Eagles got a defensive effort from everyone on the court. Five players pulled down five or more rebounds. R.L. Horton, despite scoring only five points, grabbed ten rebounds. Craft had seven, while Sai'Quon Stone had six and Beasley pulled down five.
As a team, Southern Miss outrebounded Belhaven, 60-35. It was the first time the Golden Eagles had 60 boards in a game since they pulled down 63, January 7, 1992 against East Tennessee State
Michael McNutt led the Blazers with 10 points, while as a team Belhaven shot just 23.5%.
Southern Miss heads to the road this Wednesday, November 14, for a cross-country match-up at Cal. Tip-off is set for 9:30 p.m. (CT). It is the first meeting between the two schools.
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