CALGARY, Alberta - Trailing by nine at the half, UALR pulled as close as one late in the fourth quarter before eventually falling to Calgary by a 71-68 final on Thursday at Jack Simpson Gymnasium in the game one of the annual Battle of the Border. In the first of three exhibition games for UALR, Calgary knocked down 21-of-30 shots at the foul line, compared to just 6-of-16 for the Trojans.
Trailing 69-66 with just 45 seconds remaining, UALR called timeout and drew up a play that allowed senior Will Neighbour to score inside and make it one-point game. The Dinos responded with an easy bucket for Matt Letkeman that proved to be the final basket of the game, giving Calgary the three-point win.
Neighbour led the Trojans with 15 points, while sophomore James White added 14 points and pulled down a team-high nine rebounds. Sophomore Josh Hagins scored 10 points and classmate Kemy Osse scored seven points and added two steals.
Calgary's Jarred Ogungbemi-Jackson led all scorers with 21 points, including 12 in the first quarter. Philip Barndt and John Hegwood added 14 and 11, respectively, to give the Dinos three scorers in double figures.
UALR played to a plus-12 advantage on the boards (44-to-32) and outscored the Dinos in the paint 30-to-12. The Trojans led 15-to-4 in second-chance points.
UALR found itself in an early hole, trailing 19-10 at the end of the first quarter and 39-25 at the half. The Trojans began to chip away at the Dinos' lead after halftime, pulling within two to make it 43-41 midway through the third quarter. However, Calgary closed the frame on an 11-4 run to build a 54-45 lead heading into the fourth.
UALR again pulled within two with just over five minutes left to play, but a three-pointer by Calgary's Jasdeep Gill pushed the Dinos lead back to five.
Tonight's game, like all games in the Battle of the Border, featured rules implemented by the International Basketball Federation (FIBA), with four 10-minute quarters, a 30-second shot clock and feature a NBA-sized lane. Teams have eight seconds to avoid being assessed a half-court violation and timeouts can only be acknowledged at the scorers table.
UALR returns to action on Friday at 7 p.m. when they face Alberta at Jack Simpson Gymnasium.
Patrick Newton: Sports Information Director