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Bulldogs, Techsters continue seasons

January 13, 2017

 

Erik McCree (2) defends the ball as UTEP’s Matt Willms reaches in. – Photo courtesy of Tom Morris / LATechSportsPix.com

Erik McCree (2) defends the ball as UTEP’s Matt Willms reaches in. – Photo courtesy of Tom Morris / LATechSportsPix.com

Alex Heard
Staff Reporter | amh072@latech.edu

 

Time to talk about Greek mythology.

 

This is not about monsters or sirens, but about Achilles’ heel a spot which showed great vulnerability which ultimately lead to the great god’s demise.

 

In sports, teams can relate to Achilles’ downfall, something happens which prevents said team from achieving greatness.

 

Both Louisiana Tech men’s and women’s basketball have shown early on in the season that they have an Achilles’ heel — consistency in order to finish games.

 

The Dunkin’ Dogs are currently 10-6 but have had some questionable moments.

 

The Bulldogs nearly beat the University of California-Berkeley at the beginning of the season, a team which made it into March Madness last season. Yes, it was a loss, but also a sign that the Dogs can hang with anyone — a confidence booster. But the Dogs have played inconsistently.

 

Tech’s men beat the University of Texas-El Paso 64-44 on Jan. 5, a convincing win to stay hot opening up conference play.

 

Yet, two days later they lost a heartbreaker to the University of Texas-San Antonio, 69-68, as they blew a 14-point lead when a 3-pointer from Giovanni De Nicolao with 20 seconds remaining gave UTSA the win. The loss was surprising as UTSA is not even above .500 with a record of 7-9.

 

Eric Konkol, head coach of the Dunkin’ Dawgs, said UTSA deserved the win as the Miners played extraordinarily physical all night long and were smart enough to know what Tech’s final shot would look like.

 

“The guys want to play well,” Konkol said. “They were attentive in that last huddle and looked to execute what we drew up and have practiced before. (They) did a good job of taking it away. You have to give credit to UTSA. They were very tough, physically, tonight. They owned the paint. We really tried to get it in there and get a shot at the rim and they made it difficult, so we weren’t able to finish the play there.”

 

The Lady Techsters are currently 6-8, with 4 of their 8 losses being heartbreakers, losses in the last seconds of games.

 

Much like the Dunkin’ Dogs, the Lady Techsters started off conference play hot, beating Southern Miss 72-61 but have since lost two straight — one to Texas-El Paso, 69-62, and the other to UTSA, 63-61. Like the Bulldogs, the Techsters loss to UTSA hurt as UTSA guard Loryn Goodwin banked home an off-balance, fade-away 15-footer with 1.1 seconds to play.

 

Brooke Stoehr, head coach of the Techsters, said the team played well in the closing seconds but Goodwin just made a rather difficult shot.

 

“I thought we defended the play well,” Stoehr said. “During the time out, we drew up what they were going to do. She is averaging 20 points a game.

 

“We knew they were going to put the ball in her hands and we knew they were going to try to free her up off a screen. I thought we hammered the screen, switched and forced her to take a tough shot.”

 

The Bulldogs play Charlotte at 6 p.m. today in Charlotte, North Carolina, while the Lady Techsters play host to the Charlotte women at 6:30 p.m. today in the Thomas Assembly Center.

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