Bracey lifts Louisiana Tech over North Texas 66-53

RUSTON, La. (AP) — DaQuan Bracey had 16 points, seven rebounds and five steals as Louisiana Tech stretched its home winning streak to 12 games, defeating North Texas 66-53 in the first round of Conference USA inaugural Bonus Play format on Saturday night.

JaColby Pemberton had 11 points and six rebounds for Louisiana Tech (18-10, 8-7). Mubarak Muhammed added eight rebounds.

The Bulldogs were in trouble after the first half, entering halftime trailing 34-20. But the home team mounted a serious rally in the second half to coast to the 13-point victory. The Mean Green’s 19 points in the second half marked a season low for the team.

Roosevelt Smart had 12 points for the Mean Green (20-8, 8-7), whose losing streak stretched to four games. Zachary Simmons added 10 points and nine rebounds.

The Bulldogs leveled the season series against the Mean Green with the win. North Texas defeated Louisiana Tech 63-59 on Jan. 3. In Thursday’s second round of bonus play, Louisiana Tech faces Marshall at home and North Texas matches up against Florida Atlantic.