Trojans look to rebound against North Texas

Published 9:47 pm Friday, December 30, 2011

Troy men’s basketball team suffered a slight setback in their Sun Belt Conference opener against Denver on Thursday. The Trojans fell, 79-62, as Denver improved to 11-2 for the first time in its program’s history.

Troy cut the deficit to single digits with 1:13 remaining but couldn’t come any closer than nine.

“We didn’t have a very good first half against Denver,” head coach Don Maestri said. “I think we played better in the second half but wee missed too many makeable shots.”

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Troy (5-7, 0-1) will now look to rebound today against North Texas on the road.

The Trojans come in against North Texas having dropped four of its last five games. Troy, the Sun Belt’s second highest scoring team, has managed only 63.7 points in the team’s last four losses.

The Mean Green come into today’s game also looking to bounce back after a loss. North Texas (7-7, 0-1) fell to Arkansas-Little Rock, 69-66, at home on Thursday.

The Mean Green, who are looking to rebuild after graduating much of last year’s team, have been inconsistent at times which is something Maestri feels Troy can take advantage of.

“It’s hard to tell which team will show up,” he said. “Some nights they play really well and other nights they are down.”

Troy could have another challenge on its hands on Saturday. Point guard Will Weathers injured his ankle against Denver and Maestri is questionable about his playing status against North Texas.

Weathers is the team’s leading scorer (13.4 ppg) and lead the Sun Belt in assists per game (6.3).

If Weathers is unable to play, Emil Jones will take his place in running the offense.

Despite being second in the nation in three-point shots made per game, Troy was just 1-for-9 against Denver, something they must rectify if they hope to pick up their first conference victory of the season.

“Teams aren’t playing us any different than they have,” Maestri said. “We play probably the three toughest teams in our conference to start our schedule. We’re going to have to find a way to be more consistent against quality teams.”

Tip from Denton, Tex. is set for 3 p.m.