Troy basketball competes in weekend tournament action
Published 12:42 pm Sunday, November 20, 2022
Both the Troy University men’s and women’s basketball teams were far from home this weekend, competing in tournaments in Montana and Hawaii, respectively.
After the Troy men’s team (5-1) won its fourth straight game to start the season in game one of the Zootown Classic, in Missoula, Mont., the Trojans lost to a last-second shot to St. Thomas on Friday night. Trailing 76-74 with 24 seconds left, Troy’s Duke Miles knocked down a pair of free throws to tie the game. St. Thomas’ Andrew Rohde then hit a jumper as time expired to serve the Trojans their first loss of the season.
Troy won the rebound battle 34-22 and both teams forced 13 turnovers. Troy shot 46.6 percent from the field, while St. Thomas shot 56.5 percent. Miles led the Trojans with 19 points and four assists, while Nelson Phillips scored 15 points and grabbed four rebounds. Kieffer Punter also chipped in with 14 points and five rebounds. Christian Turner scored nine points, grabbed five rebounds and earned five steals on defense. Rohde and Riley Miller both scored 16 points for St. Thomas.
The Trojans rebounded for a 73-62 win on Saturday against host school Montana. The Trojans shot 40.7 percent from the field, won the rebound battle 37-35 and forced 12 turnovers in the win. Despite trailing 32-26 at halftime, Troy exploded in the second half and outscored Montana 47-30 in the half.
“I’m just super proud of our guys,” Troy coach Scott Cross said. “What an amazing second half for us. We played as good of defense as we have all year long.
“These guys continue to fight through adversity. The way we lost yesterday, and to be down in the first half and still to be totally dominant in the second half defensively, says a lot about our guys.”
A total of five Trojans scored in double digits against Montana with Phillips leading the way with 14 points and four rebounds, while Zay Williams added 13 points, eight rebounds and two blocked shots. Christyon Eugene scored 12 points, seven rebounds and two steals, while Punter scored 11 points and Miles scored 10 points.
The women’s team followed up an 0-2 road trip to California by competing in the Hawaii North Shore Showcase in Oahu, Hawaii. The Trojans (3-2) opened up with a 68-62 win over BYU (1-4) on Saturday.
The Trojans entered the fourth quarter with a slim lead but were able to stretch it out to six points multiple times and keep the Cougars away from tying throughout the final period.
Troy’s Nia Daniel scored a career-high 17 points, while both Ja’Mia Hollings and Jada Walton scored nine points and grabbed six rebounds each. Tai’Sheka Porchia scored eight points and grabbed seven rebounds. BYU was led by Lauren Gustin with 21 points and 12 rebounds, while Rose Bubakar scored 19 points.
The men’s team will return to Trojan Arena this Tuesday for a game with Southern-New Orleans, while the women’s team wraps up action in Hawaii with a game against Washington State on Monday at 5 p.m.