The men’s basketball team took on the best team in the Lone Star Conference Tuesday night, and ACU dominated Incarnate Word for 40 minutes in route to a 93-76 victory.
The final score did not reflect the way the game looked, as the Cardinals scored several buckets down the stretch when the Wildcats had already taken their foot off the gas and coasted to a huge home victory.
The ‘Cats scored 55 points in the first half alone, while shooting over 60% from the floor. Shooting guard Elliott Lloyd knocked down a couple of open three pointers to set the tone for a fast-paced first half.
“My point guard Eric Lawton penetrated they left me open,” Lloyd said. “When he drives I have been taught to just slide to the corner and be ready to knock down shots, so that’s what I wanted to do for my team and get us going offensively.”
Incarnate Word was riding a five-game conference winning streak into Moody Coliseum, but they were unable to match the ‘Cats tenacity on the glass, as ACU out rebounded the Cardinals, 30-23.
“We told ourselves before the game and this whole week that we were going to come out strong and play as hard as we can,” senior Dosh Simms said. “Mentally we were focused and physically we prepared ourselves, so to come out the way we did was exactly what we wanted to do.”
ACU also throttled the Cardinals down low, racking up 51 points in the paint and 15 second chance points. ACU’s physical play led to frustration for the Cards and eventually three technical fouls would be assessed to various UIW players and coaches throughout the contest.
Meanwhile, the ‘Cats shared the basketball effectively, tallying 19 assists and putting all five starters in double figures. Lloyd and Lawton played well off of each other all night long, accounting for 24 and 18 points respectively.
“It’s lovely to have a two-headed monster like that in the backcourt,” Lloyd said. “A lot of teams in our conference don’t have two guys like Eric and I. We just have to bring it consistently every night and every day at practice because that’s where it all starts.”
Center Stephen Werner and power forward Cornelius Cammock combined for 27 points, and Simms had a career high 17 points to go along with his nine rebounds.
“It was just a huge team win for us,” Simms said. “The unity we are forming with these type of wins are big for our team. I love it, the win is the best part for me.”
Freshmen Parker Wentz and T.J. Brown did the heavy lifting off the bench for the Wildcats, replacing the starters and providing solid defense when their number was called.
ACU will be back in action Saturday when they travel to the beach to take on Texas A&M Kingsville in a matinee matchup scheduled for 3 p.m.