Morant Gets Third Career Triple-Double - Racers Roll Past Morehead State
March 3, 2019
The Murray State Racers got a triple-double from Ja Morant and stifled the Morehead State Eagles 71-52 Thursday at Johnson Arena in Morehead, Kentucky. The Racers (24-4, 15-2 OVC) won for the eighth-straight time and stayed in a first place deadlock with Belmont in the Ohio Valley Conference. Murray State hosts Austin Peay Saturday at the CFSB Center and can grab a share of the regular season championship with a win on Senior Day.
Morant's triple-double is his second this season and third in two season at Murray State. He finished the night with 11 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists. Morant and Wisconsin's Ethan Happ are the only NCAA D-I players with more than one triple-double this season.
The Racers had a balanced attack against the Eagles as nine players scored. Tevin Brownand Darnell Cowart added 11 points each and KJ Williams scored 10 points. Jaiveon Eavesplayed 22 productive minutes with nine points.
Morant's historic night aside, the big story was the Racers' defense that completely shut down the Eagles' offense.
The game turned in the first half when the Racers hit the Eagles with a huge burst of lockdown defense and great shooting. From the 15:31 mark to the 7:10 mark on the first half clock, the Racers hit 11-of 14 from the field and the Eagles went 1-of-18. The result was a 28-4 run for the Racers to lead 37-12. The Racers held the Eagles to only four field goals in the opening half and enjoyed a 40-14 lead.
Game Notes A the start of the day, there were only eight teams in NCAA D-I with double-digit road wins and the Racers can add their name. The Racers finish the regular season 10-3 away from home with their only losses coming to Alabama, Auburn and Jacksonville State. It marks back-to-back seasons for MSU with 10 road wins. MSU also won 10+ in 2014-15, and 2011-12. The other eight teams with 10 or more at the start of te day included Belmont, Buffalo, UC Irvine, Stony Brook, Vermont, Lipscomb, NJIT, Northern Colorado.
Morant's 11 points pushed him into the top-10 best scoring seasons in MSU history with 671. He passed No. 10 Popeye Jones (1990-91) at 666 and is tied for ninth place with Marcus Brown (1994-95) at 671 points.
Morant is closing on the MSU all-time assist mark, currently held by Don Mann who had 531 from 1985-89. Morant now has 488 and still has a chance to become just the second Racer to reach 500 and he can do it in only two seasons.
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