Troy's long-range bombs bury Blue Raiders late

January 21, 2006 · MT Media Relations
TROY, Ala. - Middle Tennessee was well aware of Troy's 3-point prowess entering Saturday's league contest and the Trojans used its long-range shooting during a late scoring spree to turn back the Blue Raiders 70-57 in front of 2,739 at Trojan Arena Saturday.

Troy, which has led the nation is 3-pointers the past two seasons and is currently leading the country in treys this year, knocked down 13-of-33 in the game but it was a late-game flurry that did the damage as Middle Tennessee lost its third straight and fourth of five. The Trojans made seven of their 13 treys in the final 12 minutes and eventually broke open to what was a close and competitive game to that point.

The game, which was a six-point contest with 7:43 remaining, featured 11 lead changes and six ties but Middle Tennessee's offensive punch was limited with senior Marcus Morrison, who is averaging 17 points and nine rebounds during his last 10 games, serving a suspension for violation of team rules. Adam Vogelsberg stepped up in his absence and led Middle Tennessee (8-9, 1-4) with 17 points, while Tim Blue finished with 10 points and six boards. Kyle Young and Kevin Kanaskie each contributed eight in the setback.

Middle Tennessee led 39-36 with 15:08 remaining but the Trojans used a 12-0 run to take a 48-39 advantage with 10:26 remaining due in large part to careless ball security on the Blue Raiders' part. The Trojans took advantage of consecutive turnovers during the run as they built their biggest lead of the game.

Troy, which was coming off consecutive wins against Louisiana-Lafayette and Western Kentucky and entered the game 5-1 on its homecourt, led 54-48 with 7:25 remaining when Boo Ramsey canned consecutive 3-pointers to extend the advantage to 60-48 with 5:01 remaining. If the damage wasn't done at that point, Ramsey's third consecutive trey proved to be the dagger.

The Trojans (10-8, 3-2) led the game leading the nation in 3-point field goals and it used the long-range bombs to bury the Blue Raiders late in the second half. Troy connected on seven straight 3-pointers during an 8:20 spurt as it broke open a tight game, extending a 45-39 lead to 66-48 with 3:40 remaining.

Middle Tennessee put together a strong first half shooting 50 percent (13-of-26) from the field and, including 36 percent from 3-point range, but exceptional defense also was a tremendous key as the Blue Raiders slowed the high-scoring assault of Troy.

The Blue Raiders, which trailed 31-30 at the intermission, received nine points and five rebounds from Vogelsberg in the first half as the junior guard helped Middle Tennessee to overcome an early 14-6 deficit with his long-range accuracy. Blue also was solid in the first half with eight points on 4-of-6 shooting from the field.

Middle Tennessee will return to action Thursday when it plays host to New Orleans.

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