Russell leads Louisiana-Lafayette over McNeese 85-80

LAFAYETTE, La. (AP) — Cedric Russell had 22 points as Louisiana-Lafayette narrowly beat McNeese 85-80 on Saturday night.

Louisiana-Lafayette (2-0) led throughout the second half but struggled to hold off the Cowboys down the stretch. The Ragin’ Cajuns led 75-65 with 89 seconds remaining in the game when McNeese rallied to get within a point.

McNeese’s Leondre Washington had a layup and a 3-pointer to help the Cowboys close to 79-76 with 39 seconds remaining. Washington completed a three-point play to close to 80-79 before the Ragin’ Cajuns made four straight free throws to complete the scoring.

Jalen Johnson added 21 points for the Ragin’ Cajuns. Johnson also had seven rebounds and five blocks for ULL. Kobe Julien added 15 points and Dou Gueye chipped in 11 for Louisiana-Lafayette (2-0).

Dru Kuxhausen had 18 points for the Cowboys (0-2). A.J. Lawson added 14 points. Washington had 11 points.

Louisiana-Lafayette takes on TCU on the road on Tuesday. McNeese plays Southern-New Orleans at home on Monday.