It was a tale of two halfs for the CSU men’s basketball team Wednesday night, as they only led 28-24 at halftime, before pulling away for a 73-48 win.
Rams head coach Tim Miles got after his players during intermission, and they responded by going on a 23-3 run to open the second half, stretching the lead to 51-27 with 9:30 to go in the game.
“It kind of seemed like the first half we were playing as individuals, and not really going through the game plan. At halftime we got lit up and guys realized we just needed to play as a team and calm down,” said senior forward Stuart Creason, who led the Rams with 16 points on 8-11 shooting and added nine rebounds.
Willis Gardner, junior point guard for the Rams, said the team was flat from warm-ups through the first half, and Miles agreed.
Miles credited the early play of walk-on sophomore Adam Nigon, who got his first start for the Rams.
“The story of that game I thought was Adam Nigon making plays.(He) kind off kept us around when no one else was doing much, ” Miles said.
Miles also praised freshman Josh Simmons, who came off the bench to score 13 points, and Ronnie Aguilar, who just missed a double-double with nine points and 11 rebounds.
Arkansas Pine-Bluff had three players reach double figures, but shot only 27.7 percent from the field.
The Rams were excited to win in front of their fans, but they think the atmosphere at Moby Arena will be better in the future.
“I think as we continue to grow, our crowds will get bigger and it will be a fun atmosphere to play in,” Simmons said.
Matthew Pucak can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.