By Ethan Smith, Sports Editor
It was once again another average week for the Eagles. The Eagles traveled to Texas to take on UT-Arlington and Texas State, losing and winning each game respectively.
The Eagles took their talents to Arlington Texas to take on the UTA Mavericks, and it was not a fun beginning to the road trip. The Eagles, for lack of a better word, got thrashed by the Mavericks 83-63, and the game was just not a good one for the Eagles. The game stayed relatively close for most of the first half, but after a 17-0 run by the Mavericks with the game tied 41-41 ensued, the game was the Mavericks’ game for the taking. UTA shot an impressive 55% from the field in the second half, ultimately leading to the victory. Senior Guard Kaelon Wilson led all-scorers with 23 points while Sophomore Guard David-Lee Jones Jr. and Junior Guard Ike Smith led the way for the Eagles with 12 points each.
The Eagles bounced back in impressive fashion as they traveled to San Marcos, Texas to take on the Texas State Bobcats. Junior Guard Ike Smith scored a career-high 27 points for the Eagles in the 81-77 victory while Senior Guard Mike Hughes added another 19 points for the Eagles. Again, in a tie game in the second half, the Eagles were on the right side of a huge run, outscoring the Bobcats 16-5 after being tied 51-51. The win would be sealed after Mike Hughes made two late free throws to end the Bobcats’ hopes of overtime or a comeback. Ike Smith spoke on his overall performance on his career night, “I felt good today, and when my first shot went in, I knew it was going to good night for me. I was attacking and getting my teammates good shots early, and I knew it was going to come back to me eventually.”
With these results, the Eagles moved to 18-11 on the season and a 9-7 Sun Belt Conference record. Results of other games allowed the Eagles to move into third place in the SBC solely and with two games left on the schedule for the regular season, both at Hanner Fieldhouse, the Eagles are looking to win both and retain their first-round bye in the SBC Tournament. The Eagles will host the 14-15(7- 9) South Alabama Jaguars on Thu. Mar 1 and the 14-15(8- 8) Troy Trojans on Sat. Mar 3 to end the regular season. Two more chances to see the Eagles in action at Hanner Fieldhouse in Statesboro, so take advantage and cheer the Eagles on to a hopeful first round bye in the SBC Tournament. GO EAGLES!