Recap: Louisiana vs. North Texas
Hot Springs, AR (Sports Network) - Elfrid Payton tallied 20 points, seven assists and seven rebounds as the Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns made easy work of the North Texas Mean Green, 74-55, in the first round of the Sun Belt Conference Tournament at Convention Center Court.
Payton also added two blocks and two steals for Louisiana (13-19), which will take on No. 1 seed Middle Tennessee in the quarterfinals on Saturday. Bryant Mbamalu and Alan-Michael Thompson netted 16 points apiece for the eighth- seeded Cajuns, while Shawn Long notched a double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds.
For ninth-seeded North Texas (12-20), Jordan Williams scored 19 points, Roger Franklin had 13 points and Tony Mitchell registered 10 points, 12 rebounds and four blocks.
Although Louisiana was outshot from the field in the first half by North Texas, 47.8 percent to 36.8 percent, it still took a 33-29 lead into intermission by attempting 15 more field goals in the opening 20 minutes.
The Cajuns cruised in the second half by improving their field goal efficiency to 50 percent.
Louisiana gained extra possessions by outrebounding North Texas (41-39) and winning the turnover battle (14-7).Game Notes