BEAUMONT, Texas – The Texas A&M-Corpus Christi men's basketball team allowed the fewest points in school history, posting a 58-35 win over Lamar on Saturday in the Montagne Center. The Islanders improved to 7-3 in conference play with the victory.
Jeff Beverly led three players in double figures for the Islanders with 11 points, while Jake Kocher and Rashawn Thomas each had 10 points and seven rebounds. Zane Knowles snared seven rebounds and posted four blocks, as the Islanders outrebounded the Cardinals 42-20. Donovan Ross led Lamar with 11 points.
Both teams started slow on the offensive end, with the Cardinals up 3-2 at the 16:53 mark. But the Islanders then went on an 18-2 run to take control of the game. Lamar was ice cold from the field, starting 2-for-17 from the floor over the game's first 12:14. The inside game picked up for the Islanders during the rally, with Thomas and Knowles each converting a pair of shots inside.
The visitors pushed the lead to as much as 16 at 24-8, but a three-point play by Donnell Minton put the Cardinals into double figures. A Thomas tip-in at the tail end of the shot clock with 26 seconds left provided the half's final points, as the Islanders entered the locker room up 15.
The 11 points were the fewest scored in a half by Lamar since the 1958 season. It was the fewest allowed by the Islanders since surrendering just seven to Savannah State in 2005. The Islanders defense held the Cardinals to 4-for-28 from the field in the stanza.
But Lamar came out of the locker room and shook off the first half to the tune of a 14-2 run to start the second. The Cardinals opened the stanza 4-for-4 from the field, giving them as many field goals in the first 3:45 of the second as they did in the entire first. Donovan Ross' three-point play cut it to a single possession, 28-25, at the 15:45 mark.
With the Islanders needing a big shot, they got one from Kocher, as the redshirt sophomore buried a triple from the left corner to snap the rally. The trifecta started a 15-2 run for A&M-Corpus Christi, capped off with a Jordan layup that saw him knife his way to the basket in transition.
But the Islanders continued to keep the pressure on both ends of the floor, slowly pulling away to coast to the victory. The visitors pushed the lead all the way to 25, at 58-33 with 3:54 remaining in the contest before finishing off the 23-point win.
The Islanders will continue their road swing next week with contests at Incarnate Word and Abilene Christian. A&M-Corpus Christi will start things out on Thursday night against the Cardinals in San Antonio. Tipoff is slated for 7:30 p.m. Yannis Koutroupis will have the call starting at 7:15 on NewsRadio 1360 KKTX.
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