Season tune up
The Trojans started launching three-pointers and never stopped Monday night in a 118-76 exhibition victory over West Alabama at Trojan Arena.
With starters Richard Delk and Michael Vogler on the bench with injuries, Troy’s Brandon Hazzard and Regis Huddleston combined to go 10-19 from behind the three-point arc and score 51 of the 116 Trojan points. As a team the Trojans hit 17-of-33 shots from long range.
Huddleston is just glad to help out his team.
“It is real big (to start like we did) because when I get hot they are going to jump out on me and my teammates are going to be there to back me up,” Huddleston said.
Huddleston ended up with 20 points and was 6-of-10 from the three-point line.
Hazzard is just glad to be playing against other teams rather than scrimmaging against his teammates.
“We have worked hard up until this point and we have good chemistry, so we are ready to come out and play,” Hazzard said.
The scoring was no surprise to Hazzard.
“Everybody on this team are scorers,” Hazzard said. “Any given night someone will have their night.”
Hazzard finished the night with a game-high 31 points, six rebounds and was 12-of-19 from the floor and 4-of-9 from beyond the arc.
Troy head coach Don Maestri was proud of how his team went out and hustled. He said the team will have to put forth that kind of effort during the year if they want to win games.
“We were pleased with the effort by the players tonight,” Maestri said. “I thought Kenny Ware and Mario Telfair they were all over the court tonight. We could have given them the mop and they could have done the floor and played. They put in so much hustle in the game tonight.”
Ware had 14 points and grabbed 11 rebounds Monday and Telfair had 11 points. Travis Lee put in 11 points to give the Trojans five in double digits.
Tom Jervis and Chris Leggett were on the brink with 9 points apiece.
Maestri said the effort will help the Trojans down the road.
“We are not a very big team, so that type of effort gives us a chance to be competitive,” Maestri said.
The team chemistry is coming along with the team learning a new style of play.
“They are learning to read and react to each other,” Maestri said. “But we did see signs of what we have been working on in practice and that was a positive. I was really pleased with the degree of intensity.”
Maestri has implemented the fast break style of play and he said it returned rewards Monday night.
“We are trying the fast break this year which means you have to run full speed every time we get the basketball,” Maestri said. “There were times when our guys would slow up at ¾ court and they will be substituted for. They will learn to run full speed because I thought that played a part in the game in the second half. The other team got a little fatigued and we got a little fatigued, so we didn’t do everything we are supposed to.”
The Trojans should have an advantage because Maestri said he would get a lot of players some time on the court this year.
Troy kicks off the regular season Saturday against UAB at Trojan Arena. Tip off is set for 2 p.m.