Sunday, January 16, 2005


Hawaii's Jake Sottos grabbed a rebound in front of Louisiana Tech's Wayne Powell in the first half of last night's game at the Stan Sheriff Center. Sottos finished with a team-high 20 points on 7-for-14 shooting and five assists for the Rainbow Warriors.

Bulldogs slip
past Hawaii

Wayne Powell's putback
with 3.3 seconds left gives
Louisiana Tech a win over UH

» Bulldogs' last option beats 'Bows

Call it the one that got away.

A rebound that somehow eluded the grasp of the Hawaii basketball team resulted in a 61-59 loss to Louisiana Tech and a squandered opportunity for the Rainbow Warriors to close the gap on the leaders in the Western Athletic Conference.

Wayne Powell's putback of a Corey Dean miss with 3.3 seconds left lifted Louisiana Tech to its second straight win in Honolulu, as the Bulldogs stunned UH in last night's WAC contest at the Stan Sheriff Center.

Louisiana Tech (7-8, 2-4 WAC) halted Hawaii's 13-game home winning streak. The win was also the Bulldogs' first in 2005 as they ended a four-game skid.

"This is the (Bulldogs') biggest win this year period," Louisiana Tech coach Keith Richard said. "It's almost impossible to win here."

The Rainbows dropped to 10-3 overall and 2-3 in the WAC heading into a key road trip this week. UH could have made up ground in the WAC race, as UTEP, the early frontrunner, lost its first conference game last night.

UH struggled to operate its offense against Louisiana Tech's zone defense and lost the rebounding battle 36-29.

"You saw the Rainbow Warriors get outhustled, outworked and our defense wasn't anywhere near what it was," UH coach Riley Wallace said. "And our rebounding, which is an extension of our defense, wasn't there.

"We got outrebounded by a shorter team and we got outworked by a quicker team."

A crowd of 6,043 witnessed the latest in a series of tight contests between the Rainbows and Bulldogs. The last six meetings between the teams have been decided by an average of 3.2 points.

The Bulldogs were the last team to beat UH at home, pulling out a 62-61 win last season.

"There's just one word to describe the last five games: adversity," Louisiana Tech guard Donell Allick said. "Tonight showed how nine guys really stay together through a whole game and pull out a win here. It's hard to win at Hawaii."

Louisiana Tech's starters played almost the entire game, and Allick led four Bulldogs in double figures with 22 points. The senior hit 10 of 14 shots from the field and had a game-high six assists.

Corey Dean finished with 13. Powell and forward Paul Millsap posted 10 each. Millsap also grabbed 14 rebounds.

UH lost despite a career night from guard Jake Sottos, who hit six 3-pointers and finished with 20 points. Guard Matt Gibson scored 10 points.

Center Chris Botez had eight points and eight rebounds and blocked four shots. Forward Julian Sensley also posted eight points.

Sottos' big night was partly due to Louisiana Tech sitting in a zone defense the entire game. Although the Rainbows were able to hit eight 3-pointers, Wallace wanted his team to be more aggressive driving to the basket.

The Rainbows went scoreless in the final 3:52 of the game.

"Against the zone, we're becoming a perimeter shooting team and that's not what we're really good at," Wallace said. "We didn't attack the zone, we wanted that stuff in the middle ... to force the action to get fouls and get to the free-throw line."

The Rainbows, who averaged 15 3-point attempts entering the game, launched 14 before halftime and 25 in the game.

Millsap had nine first-half rebounds, while Hawaii had 11 as a team.

Louisiana Tech led 34-32 at halftime and the teams took turns trading the lead throughout the second half.

Millsap picked up his fourth foul with 7:35 left as he bumped Gibson going for a loose ball. Millsap stayed in and played the entire game.

The lead changed hands five times in the next 4:30 and Sottos gave UH a 59-57 advantage with his sixth 3-pointer, this one coming from the right side with 3:52 left.

Millsap tied the game with a layup at the 1:57 mark, and the Bulldogs got the ball with 37.4 seconds left.

They ran the clock down inside 10 seconds and Dean's high-arcing jumper from the left side bounced off the top of the backboard. Powell snagged the rebound and put in the go-ahead bucket.

"I was looking around and nobody was blocking me out and I just went and got it because everybody went to Paul to block him out and left me open," Powell said.

After a series of timeouts, Sensley worked the ball up court and launched a long 3-pointer that banged off the front of the rim as the buzzer sounded.

Louisiana Tech 61, Hawaii 59

Louisiana Tech (7-8, 2-4 WAC)

fg fga ft fta min reb a tp

Allick 10 14 0 0 37 1 6 22

Powell 5 15 0 0 40 7 5 10

Haskins 2 3 2 2 39 6 5 6

Dean 6 12 0 0 39 4 3 13

Millsap 5 12 0 1 40 14 1 10

Woods 0 2 0 0 5 1 0 0



Totals 28 58 2 3 200 36 20 61

Hawaii (10-3, 2-3 WAC)

fg fga ft fta min reb a tp

Gibson 4 10 0 0 30 3 2 10

Gipson 0 3 0 2 29 4 3 0

Tatum 3 4 0 0 18 1 2 6

Sensley 3 10 2 4 32 3 3 8

Botez 4 8 0 0 32 8 1 8

Sottos 7 14 0 0 25 5 2 20

Peciukas 0 0 0 0 3 1 0 0

Nash 1 3 0 0 12 0 2 2

Blackett 2 5 1 2 19 1 0 5



Totals 24 57 3 8 200 29 15 59

Key -- fg: field goals made; fga: field goals attempted; ft: free throws made; fta: free throws attempted; min: minutes played; reb: rebounds; a: assists; tp: total points.

Halftime -- Hawaii 34, Louisiana Tech 32.

3-point goals -- Louisiana Tech 3-13 (Allick 2-5, Dean 1-3, Powell 0-5), Hawaii 8-25 (Sottos 6-12, Gibson 2-5, Tatum 0-1, Nash 0-2, Sensley 0-5). Personal fouls -- Louisiana Tech 9, Hawaii 11. Fouled out -- None. Technical fouls--None.

Steals--Louisiana Tech 8 (Millsap 3, Haskins 2, Powell 2, Allick), Hawaii 7 (Gibson 4, Gipson, Sottos, Tatum). Blocked shots -- Louisiana Tech 5 (Millsap 5), Hawaii 6 (Botez 4, Gipson, Sensley). Turnovers -- Louisiana Tech 14 (Haskins 4, Dean 3, Allick 2, Millsap 2, Powell 2, Woods), Hawaii 13 (Sensley 5, Botez 2, Gibson 2, Gipson 2, Sottos, Tatum). Officials--Kaster, Apo, Barr. Attendance--7,706.


Bulldogs’ last
option beats ’Bows

Corey Dean had done it before.

Paul Millsap is the go-to guy.

Donnell Allick had the hot hand.

Who could've figured Wayne Powell would make the game-winning shot for Louisiana Tech last night in its 61-59 basketball victory over Hawaii?

Actually, did anyone even think the Bulldogs would be in it at the end -- again, like they were last year when Dean made the game-winner?

No one else had beaten UH at the Stan Sheriff Center since. And the Bulldogs came into this game off a loss at San Jose State on Thursday.

LaTech coach Keith Richard seemed pleasantly surprised, and felt fortunate to be getting out of town with a last-shot win again.

"We need to play more games here," veteran Bulldogs radio man Dave Nitz said.

"No we don't," Richard said. "I don't want to push our luck."

Dean, last year's hero, drove to the basket and put up a wild shot that hit the top of the backboard. Powell grabbed the rebound, and put it in with 3.3 seconds left.

"That should make the Top 10 plays tonight, I hope," said Powell, who finished with 10 points.

Richard said he was pleased that his team stuck to a game plan that gave them a chance to be close at the end -- and that the Bulldogs milked the clock on the last possession.

And the rest was fate.

"Games are won and lost sometimes just because the ball ends up in somebody's hands," Richard said. "This time it just ended up in Wayne Powell's hands."

It was the fifth game in the last six meetings between UH and LaTech that was decided by four points or fewer.

"I don't know what it is when we play Hawaii," said Millsap, last year's NCAA rebounding champion, who finished with 10 points and 14 rebounds. "We just came out and played hard."

LaTech outrebounded Hawaii 36-29, despite playing the entire game in zone defenses.

"Playing man-to-man against the flex is hard. Coach decided to make them shoot," said Millsap, who played the last 7:35 with four fouls.

"If he fouled out, he fouled out," Richard said. "I didn't want to take him out and lose the game in the next 3 minutes."

Although Millsap didn't figure in the final play, his presence allowed LaTech to be in position to win.

"He's a great college player," UH coach Riley Wallace said. "He's got those long arms and he's relentless. If you don't body him and keep it on him he's going to find a little seam and get there and out-battle you. He's hungry."

Richard said he had his team play zone because he didn't like some of the man-to-man matchups, and also since the Bulldogs were battling fatigue on the tail end of the WAC's longest roadtrip.

The zone also allowed Richard to shorten his bench. He used only six players.

LaTech is 2-4 in the conference.

"The most important thing for us is (the win) keeps our team alive," Richard said. "The guys know it's a tremendous win."

Allick led LaTech with 22 points on 10-for-14 shooting.

"It was probably his best game as a Bulldog," Richard said.

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