Offensive woes in the first half proved too much to overcome for the UAB men’s basketball team as the Blazers ended the season with a 69-57 loss to No. 2 seed Louisiana Tech in the Conference USA Championship quarterfinals at Legacy Arena.
The Blazers, who were seeded No. 7 in the tournament, connected on 6-of-29 first half shots to fall into a 31-18 hole at halftime. Although they heated up a bit after halftime, the deficit was too difficult to overcome and the Blazers ended the season with a 17-16 record.
“I think it was a disappointing way to end our season,” said Robert Ehsan, who concludes his first season as the Blazers head coach. “I thought we had a lot of momentum coming into the game after last night’s win (over Charlotte). I thought we played hard, offensively, we just really struggled to shoot the basketball. Tonight, obviously, in the first half, I’m guessing 18 points is probably close to our low in a half this season. That was a frustrating
thing, especially for a great group of seniors.”
William Lee, Denzel Watts and Dirk Williams all ended with 13 points to pace the Blazers. Chris Cokley managed just two free throws but he did pull down 12 rebounds.
The loss ended the career of five UAB seniors. Watts, Williams, Tyler Madison, Tosin Mehinti and Hakeem Baxter all played their final game in a UAB uniform.
Williams was the lone senior who wasn’t part of the team that won the 2014 Conference USA Tournament and upset Iowa State in the NCAA Tournament.
All five played on last season’s team that won 26 games and captured the program’s first outright Conference USA regular season title.
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