BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Trey Freeman poured in a game-high 25 points to lead four Monarchs in double-figures, as the Old Dominion men’s basketball team (20-12) walloped Florida Atlantic (8-25) by a 72-46 score on Wednesday afternoon at Legacy Arena. The victory gives Old Dominion its 20th of the season, while advancing to the Quarterfinals tomorrow to take on No. 4 seeded LA Tech at 3:30 p.m. EST, which will be televised on the American Sports Network and streamed live in HD on americansportsnet.com.
ODU and LA Tech met earlier this season on Jan. 7 in Ruston, La., in a ballgame that the Monarchs won and snapped the country’s second longest home win-streak of 39 by a 56-53 score.
“This was a nice win for our team,” said ODU head coach Jeff Jones. “It was a very workman-like approach from our players. We were focused and able to create separation in the second half. Now we have a very big challenge in front of us tomorrow, so we are going to have to be ready.”
On Wednesday, ODU’s Trey Freeman (4-4 FT, 1-1 3PT) grabbed six rebounds to compliment his game-high 25 points. Also in double figures for the Monarchs were Aaron Bacote (15 points), Zoran Talley (12 points, seven rebounds, four assists and three steals), as well as Brandan Stith (11 points, 11 rebounds and six blocks). Denzell Taylor collected a game-high 12 rebounds (seven offensive), to go along with nine points on 4-7 shooting from the floor.
Old Dominion led for 35:32 of the possible 40 minutes. ODU outrebounded the Owls, 44-26 and dished out eight more assists as a team (14-6). The Monarchs held advantages for second chance points (22-6), points in the paint (30-20) and points off turnovers (21-14).
For the contest, ODU connected on 50.8% (30-59) from the floor and 100% (2-2) from three, while holding the Owls to 31.4% (16-51) from the floor and 26.3% (5-19) from deep.
The Monarchs utilized a 17-7 run to start the second half, claiming a 48-33 lead with 13:54 to play. With 4:50 remaining in regulation, Old Dominion extended its lead to 64-42 off a 7-0 run over a 2:49 span, before eventually claiming the 72-46 win on Wednesday afternoon in Birmingham.
After trailing 7-4 early, the Monarchs utilized a 15-5 run to claim a 19-12 advantage with 9:07 to play in the first half. The Owls pulled within two, 25-23, with 2:37 left in the opening half, before Old Dominion would claim a 31-26 lead heading into the locker rooms at half time.
Trey Freeman led the way for the Monarchs in the first half, scoring a half-high 14. Zoran Talley followed chipping in eight points, while Denzell Taylor grabbed a half-high nine rebounds.
In a first half which experienced three ties and two lead changes, Old Dominion led for a total of 15:32 of the 20 minutes. ODU held advantages for second chance points (11-4), while the Owls held a 15-0 advantage for bench points in the opening 20 minutes.
For the game, the Owls were led by Ronald Delph’s 16 points and seven rebounds. Nick Rutherford and Marquan Botley each chipped in 10 points respectively. Florida Atlantic’s bench outscored ODU’s, 15-0.
---RADIO--- Thursday’s Quarterfinal game will air across the Commonwealth on ESPN Radio 94.1 in Hampton Roads, Sports FM 100.5 in Central Virginia and WLVA 94.1 and FOX Sports 580 in Lynchburg. (Ted Alexander and Dave Twardzik’s live pregame show begins at 3:00 p.m. EST)