For the first time in 11 months, the University of Arkansas at Little Rock's men's basketball team won a Sun Belt Conference road game.
On Thursday, UALR used a 54-point second half to end a five-game losing streak with an 84-70 victory against Troy University inside Trojan Arena in Troy, Ala.
The victory was UALR's first Sun Belt road success since March 3, at Louisiana-Lafayette.
The Trojans (8-15, 3-7) were last in the Sun Belt prior to Thursday's win -- a victory that, for the time being, has reinstalled hope in what felt as if it was becoming another gloomy season.
"These guys have played hard the whole year," UALR Coach Darrell Walker said Friday. "They've tried to do everything I've asked them to do. This is a good group of guys that I have. I was really happy for them. I told them that this is a good feeling. You want to try to keep that feeling as long as you can keep it."
Thursday's road victory -- UALR's first against the Sun Belt and its first since Nov. 13 at Tennessee State -- does not guarantee the Trojans' season will get better.
UALR traveled to Mobile, Ala., shortly after Thursday's victory, practiced Friday and will meet South Alabama (12-11, 5-5) for the second time this season at 3 p.m. Central today inside the Mitchell Center.
"Hopefully it's a win that can keep us rolling," Walker said. "South Alabama's playing pretty solid basketball. They've got a nice basketball team. I'm sure they're going to be out for revenge."
The Trojans, which defeated South Alabama 91-62 on Jan. 12, moved into a three-way tie for 10th place with Appalachian State and Troy after Thursday's victory.
Arkansas State (10-13, 4-6) and Louisiana-Lafayette are in a tie for eighth at 4-6 ahead of UALR.
Even in UALR's three most recent losses, the Trojans had their chances.
UALR trailed by 12 points in the final five minutes of each loss to Coastal Carolina (72-71), Appalachian State (77-73) and Arkansas State (84-83). It lost all three games by six combined points.
Losing streak snapped
Arkansas State's women snapped a six-game losing streak with a 69-58 victory Thursday at South Alabama. ASU's two most recent victories were both against South Alabama and were separated by one month.
The Red Wolves handled the Jaguars 77-64 on Jan. 10 in Mobile, Ala. and did again Thursday at First National Bank Arena in Jonesboro.
ASU's women will face Troy, which was defeated 76-72 by UALR on Thursday, at 4 p.m. today at First National Bank Arena.
ASU's men, which was defeated 70-62 Thursday at South Alabama, will play Troy at 2 p.m. today at Troy's Trojan Arena.
Back in action
Each of the University of Central Arkansas' teams had a defacto bye week this week.
UCA's women (8-12, 3-7 Southland Conference) and men (10-13, 5-5) have not played since Feb. 2 and will host Southeastern Louisiana University for a doubleheader today at the Farris Center in Conway.
The Sugar Bears will begin things at 2 p.m. and the men will follow at 4 p.m.
Travel to Alabama
The University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff's women's basketball team is 1-5 since interim Coach Danny Evans took over after Nate Kilbert was fired Jan. 15.
UAPB (4-12, 1-8 Southwestern Athletic Conference) has lost four games in a row, including its three most recent losses being by 39, 20 and 19 points.
The Golden Lions will face Alabama State in a doubleheader today at the Dunn-Oliver Acadome in Montgomery, Ala. The women will tip at 3 p.m. and the men will follow at 5 p.m.
Sports on 02/09/2019
Print Headline: Trojans glad for road win