Deshaunt Walker scored 22 points to lead the Stephen F. Austin men’s basketball team to an 87-53 victory against North Texas on Sunday afternoon at the Super Pit.
The Lumberjacks (9-2) held the Mean Green (5-4) to just two baskets in the opening six minutes, and the visitor’s defense did not allow a whole lot more the rest of the game. SFA held North Texas to its lowest point total this season and handed the Mean Green its biggest home loss since falling to Oklahoma State during the 2000-01 season.
Walker came off the bench for the Lumberjacks to shoot 7-for-9 from the field and 5-for-7 from 3-point range. He was part of a SFA offense that shot 48 percent from the field for the game. The SFA defense held the Mean Green offense to a season-low 34.9 shooting percentage.
The Lumberjacks put together an impressive first half. First, SFA showed the Mean Green its stingy defense. The ‘Jacks held North Texas to just two field goals in the opening six minutes. A 3-pointer by Jordan Williams and a jumper by Vertrail Vaughans helped awaken the Mean Green offense. Brandan Walton came off the bench and gave them Mean Green a lift. He hit two free-throws and completed a three-point play to cut the Mean Green lead to three points, 15-12, at 11:24. Walton was the Mean Green’s leader scorer at the half with seven points.
SFA then showcased its offense. The ‘Jacks were not only able to score from long range; they were also capable of running the floor and driving to the basket. After North Texas cut the visitor’s lead
to three points, SFA shifted into another gear, scoring 11 of the next 13 points to extend its lead to 12 points, 26-14.
Walker came off the bench to lead the Lumberjacks on a 24-4 run. He scored 11 points, including three 3-pointers in the run. Walker was the leading scorer at the half with 12 points. Armani Flannigan ended the run with a tip-in for the Mean Green, but the damage had been done. SFA took its largest lead of the first half, 39-16, with 5:45 left in the opening period.
While shooting 56.7 percent from the field, SFA held North Texas to just nine field goals in the first half. The 24 points was the second-fewest points scored by the Mean Green in the first half this season. SFA also scored 20 points off 13 Mean Green turnovers. North Texas finished the game with 22 turnovers, a season high.
Walker continued his offensive onslaught in the second period. He outscored North Texas, 10-2, in a three-minute span to keep SFA ahead, 62-33, at 12:16. A 12-0 run by SFA gave the visitors its largest lead of the game, 83-46, and cemented the victory.
Sixteen of the Mean Green’s 29 second-half points were scored from the free-throw line. North Texas finished the game with 21 points from the charity stripe.
In just his second start this season, Jordan Williams scored 14 points to lead the Mean Green. He also led the team in rebounds with seven. Vaughans scored his fourth game in double figures with 11 points.