SMU had a rough time on its road trip to UTEP and UCF this past week, losing both games by nine points, 63-54 and 74-65. The Mustangs were able to stop a three-game losing streak with a win over Marshall 68-57, the program's first ever over the Thundering Herd.
The Mustangs struggled against UTEP, scoring just 21 points in the first half, going 2-of-8 from three-point range. The Mustangs never led and that was a tough way to start a road trip even though UTEP is an above average C-USA team this season.
The Mustangs had a good day from Shawn Williams, who had 16 points and seven rebounds on the day, but SMU could not defend UTEP's Jacques Streeter. Streeter had 18 points and was 5-for-5 from three-point range to lead UTEP in scoring.
Against UCF, SMU hung with the Knights most of the game but was unable to make much of their efforts even leading by seven at one point. SMU could not stop Isaiah Sykes, who had 21 points and 10 boards on the night.
The Mustangs went on a 19-9 run and cut a 11-point deficit to just 66-65 with 1:49 to go, but SMU allowed UCF to hit back-to-back layups and the game ended up out of reach for the Mustangs.
The loss against UCF was SMU's ninth in their last 12 before the team was able to turn it around against Marshall.
SMU finished their three-game road trip against Marshall and the Mustangs wore out the Thundering Herd, leading every second after Shawn Williams' three-pointer with 11:29 to go in the first half.
Jalen Jones was dominant, scoring 19 points and grabbing eight rebounds for the Mustangs on the night but was also helped by Nick Russell and Ryan Manuel, who scored 15 points and 17 points respectively.
SMU was also able to hold Marshall's bench to just two points and capitalized on Marshall's 11 turnovers, scoring 21 points off of those turnovers.
The Mustangs dominated the glass against Marshall, grabbing 41 rebounds, good for their second highest rebound total on the season.
SMU will now look to build from this win when the team returns home to Moody Coliseum on Saturday when the team hosts C-USA rival Houston, which comes in with a 2-5 C-USA record.
The Cougars are led by guard Joseph Young, who is averaging almost 17 points per game and forward TaShawn Thomas, who is close to averaging a double-double this season with 15.8 points per game and 9.9 rebounds per game.
The Mustangs cannot allow a rebounding performance from Thomas like the team allowed from Tinnon, especially on the offensive glass. Tinnon grabbed nine of his 17 rebounds on the offensive boards.
SMU will also need to try and get Houston's big man, Thomas, in foul trouble early and get to the free-throw line, something the Mustangs did not do too well against Marshall. The Mustangs, who are averaging over 75 percent from the free-throw line, only attempted five free-throws in the first half.
SMU will also need to put on a good show for five-star Dallas Kimball guard Keith Frazier, who will be on his official visit.
1. Memphis; 6-0; 17-3
2. Southern Miss; 6-0; 17-4
3. UCF; 5-1; 15-5
4. UTEP; 4-2; 11-8
5. Tulsa; 4-3; 12-9
6. East Carolina; 3-4; 12-8
7. Tulane; 2-4; 14-7
8. Marshall; 2-4;9-12
9. Houston; 2-5; 13-7
10. SMU; 2-5; 12-10
11. UAB; 1-5; 9-12
12. Rice; 1-5; 5-15
SMU Hopes To Rebound After Tough Road Trip
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