UTA (3-6) was desperate for a win going against the Dallas Baptist University Patriots.
After jumping out to an early lead in the first half, the Mavericks picked up their first win in 18 days with a 81-53 rout Tuesday night at the College Park Center.
"Dallas Baptist was a team I was very, very concerned with," head coach Scott Cross said. "It’s kind of a trap game because they have a lot of guys that can shoot the ball. They run the Princeton offense, they run zone on defense so if you're not ready to play, they can sneak up on you."
UTA shot more than 50 percent from the field in the first half and 45 percent from the game while the team also out-rebounded Dallas Baptist 54-32.
While senior guard Reger Dowell had an off-night shooting wise scoring 15 points, senior forward Brandon Edwards led the Mavericks offense with 16 points and recorded 10 rebounds for his sixth double-double of the season.
The Patriots were limited to shooting 21 percent in the first half and sophomore forward Jonathan Perry, who scored 47 points in their previous game, was held to just four points going into halftime.
Perry finished the game with nine points and Dallas Baptist was limited to shooting 29 percent for the game.
UTA’s win against Dallas Baptist snapped a five-game losing streak the team was on dating back to Nov. 15.
Edwards doubles up again
Edwards opened the game with a dunk off an alley-oop pass from junior guard Lonnie McClanahan and has now recorded six double-doubles in nine games this season.
He was the leading scorer for the Mavericks Tuesday night with 16 points and finished the game with 10 rebounds.
"He's a strong, big, powerful athlete but the reason why he rebounds is because he goes after all of them," Cross said. "Brandon goes after every one so he’s able to grab double figure rebounds on most games."
Mavericks’ offense starts red-hot but goes lukewarm in second half
The UTA offense was too hot to handle in the first half for Dallas Baptist shooting over 50 percent from the field.
The Mavericks connected on 5-of-12 shots from the three-point line and scored 22 points in the paint.
The second half, however, was a different story as UTA only shot 34 percent from the field.
Over nine minutes went by in the second half before the Mavericks scored 10 points, but UTA’s 46-24 halftime lead was too big of a mountain for Dallas Baptist to climb.
Starting lineup shakeup
Junior guard Jamel Outler started for the first time of the season against Dallas Baptist and joined McClanahan and Dowell on the court to open the game.
UTA’s three-guard lineup gave the team a quick offensive outburst and the Mavericks held a double digit lead with 7:45 remaining in the first half.
Outler, McClanahan, and Dowell combined to score 37 points in the game with Outler pouring in nine points of his own.
McClanahan laughingly said he liked the three guard lineup to start the game because it gave the team “an extra shooter so I could get my assists.”
Head coach Scott Cross celebrated his 39 birthday Tuesday night in style with a victory.