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Men’s Basketball: Cajuns Run Win Streak To Six With Win Over Arkansas State

JONESBORO, Ark.- The Louisana Ragin’ Cajuns closed out the regular season with their sixth straight win, sweeping the season series with Arkansas State with a 81-57 win over the Red Wolves on Saturday at the Convocation Center.
Louisiana (19-12, 12-7 SBC) will now head to the Sun Belt Conference Tournament where it will be the No. 4 seed, opening up against the winner of No. 5 UT Arlington and No. 8 Texas State on Friday at 5:00 p.m. at Lakefront Arena in New Orleans. Should the Cajuns advance to the semifinals, they would take on the No. 1 seed, Georgia State.
Hayward Register connected on six threes and came up one point short of tying his career high with 19 points for the game. Shawn Long finished with 17 points and 12 rebounds for his 15th double-double of the season and Bryce Washington set career highs with 12 rebounds and six assists to go with eight points.
Jay Wright had 14 points and seven rebounds, while Johnathan Stove had 10 points – all in the first half – on 4-for-6 shooting.
In all, it was the largest margin of victory ever for the Cajuns in Jonesboro, and did so by winning for the first time this season when shooting less than 40-percent form the field. But the Red Wolves were even less efficient, hitting just 35.1 percent, making them the fourth Cajun opponent in the last five games to shoot below 40 percent.
Anthony Livingston led A-State (11-18, 6-14 SBC) – who did not qualify for the SBC Tournament – with 17 points and 11 rebounds, while PJ Hardwick had 13 points off the bench.
The Cajuns shot just 37.8 percent in the first half, but connected on six threes and turned the ball over just three times to build a 43-33 lead at the break.
Wright and Stove each reached double figures in the opening 20 minutes, while Register had three of UL’s six triples. Stove got his points by connecting on all four of his field goal attempts while Wright put had a pair of threes.
The Cajuns led for the entirety of the half, but things got close as 27-26 with 4:30 to play in the half before Register connected on a three. A-State still found themselves within two at 35-33 late in the half before Wright hit a driving layup and a three from the right corner to push the lead to 10 at the half.
Long had 13 of his 17 points in the second half and Louisiana opened up the second half on a 17-5 run, quickly distancing itself from the Red Wolves. A-State got as close 14 in the second half on a three from Cameron Golden, but Long scored six of the next eight Cajun points to quickly nullify the spurt.
The Red Wolves hit just six field goals and shot 27.3 percent in the second half, while the Cajuns never led by less than 18 points in the final six minutes of the game.