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Midwestern State Men Rip The Lions In The LSC Opener 84-73

Midwestern State continued its mastery of Texas A&M-Commerce claiming an 84-73 win over the Lions in its Lone Star Conference opener here Saturday afternoon.
COMMERCE, Texas -- Midwestern State continued its mastery of Texas A&M-Commerce claiming an 84-73 win over the Lions in its Lone Star Conference opener here Saturday afternoon.

The win also snapped a two-game skid for the Mustangs who improved to 9-4 on the season while sending the Lions to 11-2 with their first setback at the A&M-Commerce Fieldhouse.

"It was a great win for us," MSU coach Nelson Haggerty said. "We got back to the things that make us a better basketball team. We were tougher both on the ball and off of the ball defensively. We dominated the glass and made them take some tough shots."

It was MSU's 13th win in its last 14 games against the Lions dating back to the 2005-06 season. Midwestern also avenged a 74-66 loss in its last trip to Commerce in Jan. 2013.

"They are a talented basketball team," Haggerty said. "They are probably one of the deepest teams I've seen them have."

The Mustangs rode the hot hand of senior guard DeJuan Plummer who matched a career high with 21 points including five 3-pointers.

The Detroit native connected on four of his treys in the opening half allowing the Mustangs to break open a close game and extend their advantage into double figures before settling on a 41-33 halftime advantage.

"We challenged everyone to compete and fight at a level we haven't this year. The guys really responded to that," Haggerty said. "DeJuan's defensive energy really helped him on the offensive end. He really stepped into the right ones."

Texas A&M-Commerce clawed their way back to within a single point early in the second half then were within four points at 70-66 with 4:30 to play.

Each time the Mustangs found the answer to extend the lead back to 10 points using a 12-2 run to put the game away with a game-high 14-point bulge when junior Xavier Blackburn put back in a layup with 45 seconds to play.

"Our shot selection was good, but everything is keyed into our defense," Haggerty said. "We were enthusiastic about the way we played tonight."

Senior guard Monzaigo Williams recorded his second career double-double with 17 points and 10 assists while added six rebounds and four steals.

The Mustangs dominated the glass to the tune of 52-27 as Blackburn (15 points, 9 rebounds) and senior guard Cam Adderley (10 points, 9 rebounds) narrowly missed double-doubles while junior forward Abiodun Adegoke had six points and 11 rebounds off of the bench.

Junior transfer LaDon Carnegie paced Texas A&M-Commerce with 18 points.

Midwestern State hits the road to face West Texas A&M Wednesday night at First United Bank Center in Canyon. Tipoff is slated for 7:30 p.m.

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