Herd never trails, dominates UTSA in win


Richard Crank

Marshall guard CJ Burks (14) attempts a runner against UTSA Thursday night. Marshall won 92-71 to stay undefeated at the Cam Henderson Center.

The Marshall University men’s basketball team started the game on a 10-0 run and never trailed in a dominating 92-71 victory over UTSA Thursday night at the Cam Henderson Center. With the win, the Herd moves to 13-8 on the season, and 6-2 in Conference USA play. The Roadrunners fall to 9-11, and 4-3 in C-USA play.

Senior guard Austin Loop led Marshall scorers with 18 points. He hit six three-pointers Thursday night, and is now only one three-pointer shy of tying the school record of 251 made three-pointers set by Tamar Slay from 1998-2002. He was six of 12 from beyond the arc against UTSA.

“I always feel like I should make a few more every game, regardless of good I shoot,” Loop said. “A couple of them felt good. I’m grateful for my teammates giving me good looks, when we move the ball like that, we’re tough to beat.”

Junior guard Jon Elmore recorded his fifth double-double of the season with 12 points and 10 assists. Senior forward Ryan Taylor led the team in rebounds with nine. All available players for the Herd saw game action on Thursday, as the starters were able to rest for most of the final 10 minutes. At one point Marshall had its largest lead at 30 points.

“We had a good week of practice,” Elmore said. “The ball really moved tonight and we made some shots. It was a good team win.”

The Roadrunners now fall to 1-11 on the road this season. Junior forward Jeff Beverly and junior guard Gino Littles led UTSA with scoring with 15 points apiece. First year head coach for the Roadrunners and former NBA player Steve Henson had high praise for Marshall.

“Marshall did a great job, they’re a terrific team,” Henson said. “They executed…credit to them, they’re a very good team. They’re doing a lot of terrific things, it’s a fun style. It’s not fun to play against.”

For Marshall, the team now has an undefeated 11-0 record in the Cam Henderson Center. The team has already surpassed last season’s win total in Huntington as the team went 10-4 at home last year. The team now has its most home victories since the 2012-13 season, when they also registered 11 victories at home.

The team with a short turnaround look to make it 12 home victories on Saturday night when they host UTEP. The Miners (5-14, 3-4 C-USA) are coming off of a 65-62 loss at Western Kentucky on Thursday. The Miners defeated Marshall last season 112-108 in El Paso.

“We owe them some revenge,” Elmore said. “We were up I think 20 last year down there in Texas and they came back and beat us. We’ll go back to the drawing board tomorrow and get ready. We hope everybody comes out and supports us again and we have a great environment.”

Tip-off on Saturday night for Marshall’s game against UTEP is set for 7 p.m.

Patrick O’Leary can be contacted at [email protected]