Southern Miss

Southern Miss basketball hopes recent success continues on road

AMANDA McCOY/SUN HERALD 
 Southern Miss guard Kourtlin Jackson dribbles the ball down the court while UTEP guard Dominic Artis defends on Thursday, January 28, 2016, in Hattiesburg.
AMANDA McCOY/SUN HERALD Southern Miss guard Kourtlin Jackson dribbles the ball down the court while UTEP guard Dominic Artis defends on Thursday, January 28, 2016, in Hattiesburg. SUN HERALD

The Southern Miss men's basketball team will look to keep the momentum rolling on the road this week after winning back-to-back games last week.

USM is set to make a two-game road trip to Texas. The Eagles travel to take on North Texas at 8 p.m. on Thursday and Rice at 7 p.m. on Saturday.

Southern Miss moved its record to 7-12 overall and 4-4 in Conference USA by picking up decisive wins over UTEP and UTSA in Hattiesburg last week. The Golden Eagles did it by playing much better on offense.

USM averaged 78.5 points a game in its two wins last week to bring its season average to 61.5 points a game.

"I think we're shooting decent shots," USM coach Doc Sadler said. "We've got a good shooting basketball team. It's not that big of a surprise for me."

After struggling badly to start the season, the USM basketball team has found new life in conference play with a .500 mark.

"These guys have given so much so I'm just excited about it," Sadler said. "I believe in these guys."

Senior guard Kourtlin Jackson continues to be the top scorer for USM with an average of 12.0 points a game. He is averaging 14.1 points and 5.0 rebounds a game in conference play.

Junior point guard Khari Price has also seen his play take an uptick against conference competition with averages of 10.5 points and 4.5 assists.

Price occasionally misses practice time due to a lingering knee injury, but he's proven steady in games.

"Not only did Khari sit out last year, but he didn't do anything because of his knee," Price said. "He didn't pick up a basketball from the time he got here in August until the first of November. It's going to take him a while, but he's got such control of the game."

North Texas has struggled this season and sits at 7-14 and 2-6 in conference play.

Six-foot-7 sophomore forward Jeremy Combs has been the star for the Mean Green this season with averages of 15.6 points and 10.7 rebounds a game.

Junior point guard J-Mychal Reese, a Texas A&M transfer, is averaging 15.0 points and 4.1 assists a game.

Rice also features a record of 7-14 and 2-6.

The Owls feature three different players who average in double digits - Marcus Evans (19.7), Egor Koulechov (16.7) and Marquez Letcher-Ellis (10.5).

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