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January 11th, 2009
Bobcats open SLC play with 87-76 win over UTA


Brent Benson scored 21 points, while  Brandon Bush and Emmanuel Bidias A’ Moute combined for 35 points, 18 rebounds and five blocked shots to lead the Texas State men’s basketball team to an 87-76 victory over UT Arlington in the Southland Conference opener for both teams.

Bush scored 19 points and grabbed eight rebounds for the Bobcats, while Bidias A’ Moute registered his first double-double as a Bobcat with 16 points and a game-high 10 rebounds. He also blocked a career-high four shots and added three assists and a steal to help the Bobcats win their fifth straight home game.

The Bobcats scored the first four points of the game as sophomore center Ty Gough hit a jumper in the lane and passed the ball to Bush for a slam dunk after he stole the ball from UTA’s Marquez Haynes.

With the game tied at 8-8, UTA went on a 5-0 run to take a 13-8 lead on Roge’r Guignard’s three-point field goal. But, Texas State came right back with a 14-6 run of its own to take a 22-19 lead with 11:19 left to play in the first half.

The two teams fought back and forth before John Rybak broke a 37-37 tie with a three point shot from the right wing to give Texas State a 40-37 lead with 2:35 left in the opening half. Texas State never trailed again as Bush added a jumper and Benson made two free throws to give the Bobcats a 44-41 lead at halftime.

UTA made one last run in the first five minutes of the second half when Trey Parker hit a slam dunk to tie the score at 50-50 with 15:36 left.

Texas State answered again as the Bobcats used a 20-8 run during the next eight minutes to open up a 70-58 lead with 7:21 left to play. Bush and Bidias A’ Moute scored six points each to lead Texas State’s rally.

The Bobcats never looked back and extended its lead to 16 (78-62) with 4:06 left to play. UTA couldn’t get closer than 12 until 39 seconds remained and Haynes made two free throws to make the score 85-74.

After Benson made a pair of free throws, Anthony Vereen hit a lay-up off an offensive rebound to make the final score 87-76.

Gough and Corey Jefferson finished with six points each, while Jefferson handed out seven assists. Rybak, Cameron Johnson, Jonathan Sloan and Ryan While also added four points each and Dylan Moseley scored three points on a trey in the second period.

Haynes led UTA with 23 points, while Vereen added 16 points and Guignard finished with 12 points.

Texas State held UTA to 41 percent shooting from the field, including 27.8 percent beyond the three-point line, marking the third time in the last four games that the Bobcats have held their opponents under 30 percent behind the three-point line.

The victory was the second Southland Conference win for Texas State over UTA after the Bobcats won a 97-86 decision in the final game of the 2007-08 season before the Mavericks went on to win the SLC Tournament.

The win gives Texas State an 8-6 overall record this year after winning their fifth straight win in home games, while UTA fell to 7-7. The Bobcats play a pair of road game at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi on Jan. 14 and at Central Arkansas on Jan. 17 before returning home to play host to Sam Houston State on Jan. 21.

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