Jon Davis led Charlotte (5-17, 1-10 C-USA) with 24 points, eight assists and eight rebounds, but they were unable to get the win against Louisiana Tech (15-10, 6-6 C-USA), falling 83-65 Thursday night.
Charlotte had two players in double figures, Davis and Najee Garvin. Garvin had 12 points and two rebounds. Austin Ajukwa added nine points and Jailan Haslem added 8 points and grabbed eleven rebounds.
Jaylan McGill had 8 points and one rebound off the bench.
“Jaylan made some big shots. I challenged him a little bit, he needs to understand why he is here and he proved why he is here during that stretch. He needs to play with that same type of tenacity the entire time,” said coach Houston Fancher.
Louisiana Tech had five players in double figures. Daquan Bracey led with 17 points.
Both teams started off the game with a basket. Then, Louisiana Tech went on an 18-3 run taking a 20-5 lead with 13:35 left in the first half.
Austin Ajukwa made some free throws and John Davis added a jumper to bring the 49ers within nine with 4:50 until halftime. Bracey’s three point play extended Louisiana Tech’s lead 44-32 going into halftime.
Louisiana Tech scored the first six points of the second half to extend their lead to 18 points, 50-32 with 17:41 remaining in the second half. The 49ers behind a basket by Haslem and two threes by McGill cut Louisiana Tech’s lead to 59-47 with 12:34 remaining. Louisiana Tech’s Christon Exavian hit a three pointer to extend their lead back to 15 points. Haslem made a layup cutting Louisiana Tech’s lead back to 13 points, but that is the closest the 49ers would get the rest of the way.
Turnovers were a problem again for Charlotte. They committed fourteen turnovers in the game.
Behind Haslem’s 11 rebounds the 49ers finished the game with a 37-26 advantage on the boards. Charlotte shot 40 percent from the field and 90 percent from the free throw line.
The Niners were playing without a few key scorers. Andrien White, Ryan Murphy, and Bryant Thomas were all out with injuries.
“We got off to a tough start. They made some shots early and shot the ball well over the course of the night. We got off to a poor start offensively. We’re a little bit challenged with our numbers here now and we must try to make sure we play as mistake free as we can. Four of our first seven possessions resulted in turnovers, it’s hard to overcome that kind of stuff when you are playing against a hot shooting team,” said head coach Houston Fancher.
Charlotte finishes their Conference USA road trip against Southern Mississippi on Saturday Feb. 10. Tip-off is set for 5:30 p.m.