UTSA rolls past Bethany, 101-77

UTSA's Nick Allen played with a sore foot but recorded 12 points and 8 rebounds in 18 minutes in the Roadrunners' 101-77 victory over Bethany on Monday, Dec. 17, 2018 at the UTSA Convocation Center. - photo by Joe Alexander

UTSA’s Nick Allen played with a sore foot but recorded 12 points and 8 rebounds in 18 minutes in the Roadrunners’ 101-77 victory over Bethany on Monday, Dec. 17, 2018 at the UTSA Convocation Center. – photo by Joe Alexander

The UTSA Roadrunners enjoyed the feeling of a 101-77 victory Monday night over the Bethany College Swedes.

A dozen Roadrunners played and 11 of them scored, as they kicked the lead up to as many as 33 points in the last few minutes at the Convocation Center.

In the aftermath, however, UTSA senior Nick Allen said he recalled a different mood in the dressing room at halftime.

It was a foul mood, in some respects.

Players were mad that they led the NAIA program from Lindsborg, Kansas, by only eight points.

Coach Steve Henson was upset about it, as well, and he let the players know it.

“He was just frustrated because I think he sees what the older guys are seeing,” senior forward Nick Allen said. “Man, we can be so good. Why are we not fulfilling our potential for 40 minutes?’ ”

In response, the Roadrunners clamped down on defense early in the second half to take charge on one end of the floor.

On the other end, they ran their offense well, at one time outscoring the Swedes 16-0 to build a 65-42 lead.

Bethany never got closer than 21 the rest of the way.

Notable

Guards Keaton Wallace and Jhivvan Jackson scored 23 points apiece to lead the Roadrunners. The two were aided by Allen, who produced 12 points and eight rebounds and Adokiye Iyaye, who added 11 points off the bench. Byron Frohnen scored 10.

Quotable

“We felt good about the way we came out and started the second half. We had to get after ’em at haltime a little bit, which we didn’t want to do. We just didn’t quite have enough fight there in the first half.” — UTSA coach Steve Henson

Records

UTSA 4-7
Bethany 7-6

Ties that bind

Bethany is led by head coach Dan O’Dowd, a former UTSA assistant coach. Former UTSA center Edrico McGregor is a Bethany assistant. O’Dowd, who worked under the late Brooks Thompson at UTSA, served as the initial recruiting contact for Allen.

In addition, UTSA coach Steve Henson lived in Lindsborg when he was a toddler.

With his father an athlete and a student-teacher at Bethany, Henson recalled that he once wore a “Swede outfit,” complete with a “fake beard, a helmet and a fake sword.”


Jhivvan Jackson passes to Keaton Wallace, who soars for a first-half alley-oop slam.

San Antonio connections

Bethany point guard Isiah Saenz, from St. Anthony, produced 9 points, 4 rebounds and 4 assists. Forward Lavaris Duncan, from Judson, had 12 points and 6 rebounds.

UTSA’s Steve Henson shows confidence in Adokiye Iyaye

Adokiye Iyaye. UTSA beat Mid-American Christian 104-74 on Saturday, Dec. 8, 2018, at the UTSA Convocation Center. - photo by Joe Alexander

UTSA freshman Adokiye Iyaye has averaged 6.1 points in 19.1 minutes through nine games.

Two years ago, UTSA coach Steve Henson identified Giovanni De Nicolao and Byron Frohnen as two freshmen he could trust.

As a result, the two have started every game of their college careers thus far.

Last season, Henson unleashed two more freshmen — Jhivvan Jackson and Keaton Wallace — and they not only showed maturity beyond their years, but they also led the Roadrunners to a 20-win season.

This year, freshman Adokiye Iyaye has emerged as the latest example of Henson’s ability to find and sign players in high school who can produce immediately in college.

Unlike De Nicolao and Frohnen, Iyaye hasn’t started a game. Also, he hasn’t shown the explosive offensive skills of a Jackson or a Wallace.

Not yet, anyway.

But the 6-3 guard from Oklahoma City has won enough confidence from coaches to remain solidly in the playing rotation leading into a Saturday afternoon test in Little Rock against Arkansas.

Posssessing excellent defensive skills, Iyaye has played in all nine games, averaging 6.1 points in 19.1 minutes.

“We threw him right into the fire,” Henson said. “When Jhivvan was out (injured), certainly there were a lot of minutes available. We threw him in there, and he was pretty comfortable from the start (of the season).

“His IQ is very good. His feel for the game is very, very good.”

As a result, Iyaye has been either the first or second guard off the bench.

His shooting has been spotty — 2 of 22 on 3-pointers — but coaches are sticking with him, perhaps because of what they saw of him in high school.

“We watched him a lot in the summer,” Henson said. “There were AAU games when his team would be dominating … and you’d hardly notice Doke. (But) if there’s a close game and they needed a bucket, he’d take over.

Steve Henson, UTSA beat Mid-American Christian 104-74 on Saturday, Dec. 8, 2018, at the UTSA Convocation Center. - photo by Joe Alexander

Third-year UTSA coach Steve Henson.

“Same thing in high school. He played with another really good guard, and at times he deferred to the other kid. But when the game was on the line, he could step up and make the plays that needed to be made.”

For instance, Iyaye averaged 18 points and led Oklahoma City’s Putnam High School to the Class 6A state title last season.

In the title game, he was clutch, scoring the last six points to clinch the title.

Of course, UTSA’s fans have yet to see anything like that so far this season, with Iyaye shooting 36.5 percent from the field and .091 percent from three.

“It’s a little tougher here (compared to high school),” he said. “But that’s what I like. You just got to get in the gym and shoot all the time. In practice, you (have got to) get yourself really tired and then just shoot the ball, so, it can be like it is in the game.”

Henson recently had a heart-to-heart with Iyaye. Considering his shooting woes, he was encouraged to drive more to the basket, to try to create for himself and others.

Iyaye responded with a 4-for-6 shooting effort and 12 points last week against Mid-America Christian.

“(Coach) really helped me out on that,” Iyaye said. “Like, he came up to me and told me, ‘Your shots are going to fall. You’ll be a great 3-point shooter.

“‘Keep working on the shot. You’ll be fine. But, also attack and make plays.’

“(With) him coming up to me like that, (it) really helped. (It) really helped me feel better.”

UTSA runs away from Mid-America Christian, 104-74

Sophomore guard Keaton Wallace scored a career-high 35 points to lead UTSA to a 104-74 victory over Mid-American Christian on Saturday, Dec. 8, 2018, at the UTSA Convocation Center. - photo by Joe Alexander

Sophomore guard Keaton Wallace scored a career-high 35 points to lead UTSA to a 104-74 victory over Mid-American Christian on Saturday, Dec. 8, 2018, at the UTSA Convocation Center. – photo by Joe Alexander

With Keaton Wallace and Jhivvan Jackson leading a rejuvenated offense, the UTSA Roadrunners blew out the NAIA Mid-America Christian Evangels, 104-74, Saturday afternoon.

Yes, it was fun for the Roadrunners to win at home again, finally, after an 0-3 start at the Convocation Center. It also felt good to produce season-highs in points and field goal percentage (60.3).

But more than that, UTSA coach Steve Henson commended the players’ focus and work ethic in practices since a deflating 69-68 home loss to Texas State last Saturday.

“I liked the entire week,” Henson said. “Certainly, this is a results-based thing that we’re involved in here and we have to find a way to win ball games. But we also have to find a way to get better every week and every opportunity. I think we really took advantage of that this week.”

Individuals

UTSA — Wallace scored a career-high 35 points on 12 of 16 shooting. He was one off the school record with nine threes. Jackson produced a season-high 28 on an 11-for-21 effort.

Mid-America Christian — Char Beauregard, Jr., scored 15. Daniel William and Justin Bogle had 13 apiece.

Records

UTSA 3-6
Mid-America Christian 6-3

Notable

Henson shuffled his starting lineup, giving Jackson his first start of the season. Jackson responded with a 25-minute performance that included six rebounds, three assists and a team-high four turnovers. The move seemed to create space on the floor for Wallace, who was getting open looks consistently.

Quotable

Asked what went into the decision to start Jackson, Henson said: “Today was the first day we didn’t have to monitor his minutes. We didn’t know where his conditioning would even be prior to being unrestricted. So, it was good to see that that was not a factor. Really, just to give us a jolt offensively.”

Jhivvan Jackson. UTSA beat Mid-American Christian 104-74 on Saturday, Dec. 8, 2018, at the UTSA Convocation Center. - photo by Joe Alexander

Jhivvan Jackson produced a season-high 28 points against Mid-America Christian.

UTSA’s De Nicolao weighing options on pro basketball

Giovanni De Nicolao. Texas State beat UTSA 69-68 on Saturday, Dec. 1, 2018 at the UTSA Convocation Center. - photo by Joe Alexander

Giovanni De Nicolao drives to the bucket against Texas State.

UTSA junior Giovanni De Nicolao confirmed Friday that he is on pace to graduate in the spring and could elect to make the jump to professional basketball next season.

De Nicolao, from Padua, Italy, is a third-year starting point guard for the Roadrunners.

He made his remarks as UTSA (2-6) prepares to host NAIA Mid-America Christian (6-3) on Saturday at 3 p.m. at the Convocation Center.

“I still have open thoughts about everything,” De Nicolao said. “I didn’t make my mind (up), for sure. I’m … talking to people at home, about going back there and playing in Europe or in Italy.

“But, I also have the opportunity (to stay at UTSA). It’s always good to finish your four years eligibility and get a masters (degree).”

UTSA coach Steve Henson said he knew in the summer that this season might be De Nicolao’s third and last as a Roadrunner.

It all depended on whether his playmaker could take a heavier course load in the fall and the spring to earn an undergraduate degree.

De Nicolao said he is set to complete 17 hours this fall — he is currently holding down five ‘A’ grades and one ‘B’ — and another 16 hours in the spring.

He said he also needs to complete an internship next summer to complete his kinesiology degree requirements.

Henson said he is proud of De Nicolao for his work in the classroom, which will yield an earlier-than-anticipated degree, all while opening a door to get a jump start on a pro career — if that’s what he wants.

“It gives him options, which is great,” Henson said. “You never want to restrict someone in a situation like that. He made the decision to come to the (United) States. He came here to get a degree and play college basketball. The plan all along was to go back and hopefully play professionally back home.

“So, the fact that he’s able to do all that in three years is pretty impressive. But we didn’t want him to shut the door on the opportunity to come back (UTSA), you know. If we have a good year and at the end of the year he decides that he wants one more year, one more crack at it, we want that to be an option for him, as well.”

De Nicolao has started and played every game for the Roadrunners (76 in all) since arriving for the 2016-17 season.

He is averaging 7.9 points, 4.8 rebounds and 3.3 assists this year.

Notable

UTSA is coming off a 69-68 home loss to Texas State last Saturday. Sophomore guards Keaton Wallace and Jhivvan Jackson are leading UTSA in scoring at 17.6 and 16.8 points per game, respectively. Jackson has played five games since returning from a knee injury.

Quotable

“I like the mindset. We’re defining and refining roles a little bit more this week. I think everybody’s settling in and understanding the significance of that. Hopefully that’ll allow us to be more efficient offensively. That’s the big key right now. We’re playing pretty hard defensively … But offense is where we’ve got to be sharper.” — UTSA coach Steve Henson, on the team’s recent practices.

Texas State edges UTSA, 69-68, in Interstate 35 thriller


Texas State players and fans celebrate a 69-68 victory Saturday afternoon at the UTSA Convocation Center.

An impromptu party materialized behind the visitors’ bench at the UTSA Convocation Center late Saturday afternoon.

For fans of the Texas State Bobcats, the celebration likely carried on late into the night following a pulsating 69-68 victory over the Roadrunners.

As for Texas State coach Danny Kaspar, he had other plans.

“I’ll sleep better tonight,” he said.

At one juncture near the end of the game, Kaspar’s team seemed to be coming unglued.

It committed a turnover in front of the Texas State bench, and with 24 seconds remaining, UTSA’s Jhivvan Jackson sank two free throws to give the Roadrunners a 68-65 lead.

Not to be denied, the Bobcats answered with 13 seconds left on a clutch, game-tying, three-point shot from the top of the arc by guard Nijal Pearson.

UTSA, in response, rushed it upcourt with its own star on the dribble.

Jackson, on the right wing, created separation from a defender with a cross-over dribble, but his three-point jumper for the lead rimmed out.

“A shot I take hundreds of times every day,” Jackson lamented.

As for the rebound, UTSA’s Byron Frohnen appeared to get his hands on it, but he lost control, and it caromed off to the side, in front of the Roadrunners’ bench.

From there, Texas State’s Jaylen Shead secured it and started his dribble upcourt.

Suddenly, UTSA’s Keaton Wallace confronted Shead, grabbing at the ball, as a referee whistled him for a foul in front of the UTSA bench.

After a clock re-set, Shead hit the first free throw for the final point of the game with 0.9 seconds left.

Remembering the moment when he heard victory cheers from the Texas State fans, Kaspar admitted that it felt good. He also said he felt fortunate to win, under the circumstances.

In discussing the final, frantic seconds, the coach said, “We got to hit a three to win the game, probably. We hit it. They’re going to have a shot to win the game. They don’t (make it), and we get a foul out of it.

“So, I got to go to church tomorrow and say thank you.”

Records

Texas State 7-1
UTSA 2-6

The I-35 rivalry

San Marcos-based Texas State, from the Sun Belt Conference, broke a two-game losing streak in the series to UTSA. The Bobcats earned a measure of redemption after blowing a late nine-point lead in a one-point loss last year at home. UTSA, from Conference USA, still leads the overall series, 35-25.

Individuals

Texas State — Nijal Pearson, 26 points on 10 of 21 shooting, including 5 threes. Also seven rebounds, a block and a steal. Alex Peacock, 15 points on 5 of 8 shooting. Alonzo Sule, eight points off the bench, on 3 of 6 from the field.

UTSA — Jackson, 22 points on 6 of 18 shooting. He hit 5 of 11 from three. Keaton Wallace, 19 points. Giovanni De Nicolao, 13.


Texas State’s Nijal Pearson steps back and drills a three to tie the game with 13 seconds left.

Pearson’s surge

Pearson, a 6-foot-5 junior from Beaumont Central, continues to play at a high level. He has scored 33, 25 and 26 points in his last three games, respectively.

In torching the Roadrunners, he scored in a variety of ways. On a few of his three-pointers, Pearson stepped back and swished long balls with a hand in his face.

One of his buckets in the first half came on a sweet Euro-step move, when he twisted through defenders and sank a layup (see video below).

Establishing an identity

UTSA had plenty of chances to take charge of the game but shot poorly from the field, hitting only 36.4 percent for the game, including 9 of 25 in the first half and 11 of 30 in the second half.

“We’re taking some baby steps,” UTSA coach Steve Henson said. “But we got a lot of work to do if we’re going to be a really, really good team. I think we’ve got the pieces to do that.

“We’ve still got to figure out what our identity is going to be. We’re not playing real, real fast. We’re not defending at a real high level. We’re kind of average in a lot of areas right now.

“If we’re going to be a really good team, we need to establish an identity.”


UTSA point guard Giovanni De Nicolao hits a wild runner in the opening minute Saturday against Texas State.

Lamenting the late miss

UTSA guard Jhivvan Jackson, on his three-point shot that rimmed out: “It’s a shot I take hundreds of times every day. I thought it was a great shot, too, and the team wanted me to take it. I took it. It just didn’t fall.”

The foul

Henson seemed to think that Wallace was overly aggressive on the play the resulted in the late whistle, even though calls like that are often times not called at all.

“He went and grabbed the ball with two hands,” Henson said. “There was clearly contact there. It was right in front of me. I didn’t get a great look at it.

“It’s the kind of play, you have to let it go. As much as he wanted to go get the basketball, kinda had to let that one go.”

Pearson leads Texas State into the UTSA Convocation Center

Texas State guard Nijal Pearson drives around Rice’s Chris Mullins Wednesday night in San Marcos. — Courtesy photo by Brooke Adams

SAN MARCOS — Deep down inside, Texas State shooting guard Nijal Pearson always knew he could play at a high level in NCAA Division I basketball.

“I always figured it would come in due time,” the 6-foot-5 junior said Friday afternoon.

Even though Pearson didn’t have the total skill package at Beaumont Central High School, Texas State coach Danny Kaspar said he could see the potential.

“He’s like some of my players at Stephen F. Austin,” the coach said. “They weren’t recruited very hard, and the knock on them was, they were not great shooters.”

On the other hand, Kaspar said he always sees intangibles in some young men, particularly those who excel both in academics and athletics.

He said he tells them honestly that they will need to work on their offense.

“You just knew (Pearson) would do it,” Kaspar said. “He was in, I want to say, the top ten (academically) in his (high school graduating) class. He’s one of our best students here. So, he just competes in every way, shape or form. In the classroom. On the court.

“(He) is very much a competitor. You challenge him about getting in the gym and putting up 400 and 500 shots a day, and he responds.”

The work has paid off for Pearson, who leads the Bobcats in scoring at 21 points per game coming into a weekend road test against the UTSA Roadrunners.

Pearson has emerged as the story of the season so far for Texas State (6-1) as it prepares to play UTSA (2-5) on Saturday afternoon at the Convocation Center.

Tipoff is at 3 p.m.

The Bobcats have won four straight, including three last week at the Portland Classic in Oregon and again Wednesday night at home against Rice.

Pearson scored a career-high 33 in the finale against the Portland Pilots, and then added 25 for good measure in a 74-60 victory over the Owls.

“We’re just having fun playing together, sharing the ball and playing defense,” he said. “For the most part, we figured we were a pretty good team. We knew in the summer time. So, I wouldn’t say we are really high right now. Basically, we’re doing what we’re expected to do.”

Beating UTSA is important to Pearson, who is 0-2 in his career against the Roadrunners.

“It’s a rivalry game,” he said. “I’m excited about playing in it. I don’t think I’ve made my mark in a UTSA-Texas State game yet, so, I’m excited that I get a chance to do that tomorrow. I’m anxious to play.”

Last year’s loss still stings a bit, because UTSA rallied in the last 70 seconds to erase a nine-point deficit and win, 79-78.

Asked what he remembers about last year, he shrugged and said simply, just that the Bobcats lost.

Because of a lock-down defense yielding only 37 percent shooting per game, Texas State would seem to have a better chance this year against the Roadrunners, who have struggled some offensively.

Pearson’s offense, meanwhile, has been consistently good.

He is shooting 52.9 percent from the field, including 53.2 percent from the three-point line. On top of that, he’s averaging 4.3 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 1.6 steals.

Pearson is not the same player that shot 43 percent as a freshman and 39 percent as a sophomore.

“I work hard on my game,” he said. “I just kept working. I knew eventually it was going to happen. I just didn’t know when … But, I’m just staying with it. (I’m trying to) focus, letting the game come to me, having fun out there.”

UTSA’s Jackson has delivered ‘in a huge way’ since return

Guard Jhivvan Jackson said it feels “really good” to be back on the floor, playing in games again for the UTSA Roadrunners.

UTSA's Jhivvan Jackson shoots around before the Roadrunners' game against Oklahoma on Monday, Nov. 12, 2018. The sophomore guard has not played yet this season while he rehabs from an injury he suffered last season. - photo by Joe Alexander

UTSA’s Jhivvan Jackson shoots around before a
Nov. 12 home game against Oklahoma. – photo by Joe Alexander

Likewise, it feels good for the Roadrunners to see their leading scorer from a year ago rounding into form.

“He’s worked so hard,” UTSA coach Steve Henson said Thursday afternoon. “He’s had such a good offseason in so many ways.”

The offseason, for Jackson, was both painful and grueling.

Knocked out at the end of last season with a left knee injury, he underwent anterior cruciate ligament surgery and spent months consumed with strength exercises, combined with basketball workouts.

Jackson sat out the first three games of the new season, but he has since returned to play the last four, averaging 15.5 points in 16.5 minutes off the bench in that span.

It’s hardly a coincidence that UTSA (2-5) has won two straight leading into a Saturday afternoon test at home against the Texas State Bobcats (6-1).

“We were struggling a little bit offensively,” Henson said. “So, it was nice to throw him into the mix. The guys are ready to embrace him in that regard, (and) he’s delivered in a huge way — basically, a point a minute.

“So, it’s pretty amazing to be out that long and step in and do what he’s doing.”

Jackson was cleared medically before UTSA’s three-games in three-days trip to Florida from Nov. 14-16 at the Gulf Coast Showcase.

Originally set to return in the first week of December, he said the doctor told him that he could play in the tournament if he felt he was ready.

Jackson said he had felt ready earlier than that but didn’t want to risk anything.

“I felt great before the first game I played,” he said. “For a couple of practices before that, I felt really great. I told the coach I was ready.”

In the early stages of his return, Jackson has been on a minutes restriction. It was 15 minutes for the three games in Florida and then 20 on Monday in an 86-82 victory at Houston Baptist.

Jackson said he’ll likely be limited to about 20 against Texas State, as well.

Regardless, he has looked good, scoring 21 points each of UTSA’s last two games.

Henson said Jackson’s defense sparked a 12-0 run that erased a six-point deficit late in the game at HBU.

“We got down, and we came out of a timeout, and he was the one that really set the tone defensively,” Henson said. “(He) picked up the ball, got a little ball pressure, ignited our defense.

“He’s a competitor. He’s tough. He’s quick. We count on him for scoring, but he can do other things, as well. Getting him back in there is helping us.”

Jackson, Frohnen score 21 as UTSA rallies past HBU, 86-82

Keaton Wallace. St. Edward's beat UTSA 77-76 in men's basketball on Wednesday night, Nov. 8, 2018, at the UTSA Convocation Center. - photo by Joe Alexander

Keaton Wallace drives on a defender in a Nov. 8 home game against St. Edward’s.

Jhivvan Jackson and Byron Frohnen scored 21 points apiece Monday night as UTSA rallied past Houston Baptist, 86-82.

Frohnen, a junior from Las Vegas, hit 10 of 12 shots from the floor, scored his career high and led the Roadrunners to their second straight victory.

Keaton Wallace had 20 points, eight rebounds and two steals for UTSA.

The game was played in Houston at Sharp Gym. Houston Baptist came in with confidence, having knocked off Wake Forest, 93-91, on the road last weekend.

Huskies guard Ian DuBose led the home team with 15 points, 10 rebounds and six assists.

Benjamin Uloko had 14 points on 6 of 9 shooting off the bench, and 6-10 center Edward Hardt scored 13 for HBU.

In a game that went back and forth all night, the Huskies led by six with six minutes left but couldn’t hold on against the Roadrunners, who scored a dozen points in a row to take charge.

Notable

UTSA hit its season-high in scoring, while shooting 46.8 percent from the field. Frohnen scored 13 in the first half. Jackson, in his fourth game back since returning from a knee injury, was limited to 20 minutes. He scored 15 points in the second half. Jackson has scored 21 in back-to-back games. Wallace hit four three-pointers, giving him eight in his last two.

Quotable

“A lot of these teams have to focus on these great shooters in Keaton and Jhivvan. That just opens up some lanes for me, and I took advantage of it tonight.” — Frohnen told the team’s radio broadcast on KTKR.

Records

UTSA: 2-5
Houston Baptist: 2-3

Coming up

Texas State at UTSA, Saturday, 3 p.m.

How it happened

Houston Baptist appeared to be on the verge of winning when Oliver Lynch-Daniels drove for a layup and a 72-66 lead for the Huskies with 5:45 left.

Not to be denied, the Roadrunners surged 12-0 over the next two minutes, with Jackson scoring the first eight in the run.

UTSA point guard Giovanni De Nicolao capped the streak when he sank a free throw for a 78-72 lead with 3:03 remaining.

At the end, DuBose drilled a three-pointer to pull the Huskies within two with 8 seconds left.

But Jackson was fouled on the inbounds, and he hit two free throws to account for the final points.

Jhivvan Jackson scores 21, UTSA breaks into the win column

UTSA's Jhivvan Jackson shoots around before the Roadrunners' game against Oklahoma on Monday, Nov. 12, 2018. The sophomore guard has not played yet this season while he rehabs from an injury he suffered last season. - photo by Joe Alexander

UTSA’s Jhivvan Jackson shoots around before the Roadrunners’ game against Oklahoma on Nov. 12. – photo by Joe Alexander

Sophomore Jhivvan Jackson scored 21 points Wednesday as the UTSA Roadrunners won their first game of the season, downing Florida Gulf Coast, 76-65.

In a game for seventh place at the Gulf Coast Showcase in Estero, Florida, Keaton Wallace produced 19 points for the Roadrunners, who improved to 1-5.

Christian Carlyle led the Eagles with 16 points as Florida Gulf Coast dropped to 2-5.

UTSA entered the tournament in Florida coming off losses to Division II St. Edward’s and to Division I powers Oklahoma and Oklahoma State.

Jackson, coming off knee surgery, did not play in any of the games as he completed his rehabilitation from ACL knee surgery.

Cleared to play before the road trip to Florida, he competed in all three games, with his playing time restricted to 15 minutes.

He scored 10 points in a 65-56 loss to UC Irvine and then had another 10 (on 2 of 11 shooting) in a 99-79 loss to South Dakota State.

Against Florida Gulf Coast, Jackson scored his season high on 7 of 15 shooting from the field and 5 of 10 from three-point range.

Wallace, also a sophomore, played well with 19 points, including four three-pointers.

Last year, Jackson and Wallace emerged as two of the keys in UTSA’s resurgence as a basketball program.

The Roadrunners produced a 20-15 record for their first 20-win season in seven years.

Notable

Florida Gulf Coast center Ricky Doyle played against his father’s alma mater. Doyle had 2 points, a rebound and an assist for the Eagles. His father is Rick Doyle, who was UTSA’s first great center. Doyle played for the Roadrunners from 1982-84. He teamed with Derrick Gervin to lead UTSA to its first 20-win season in 1983-84. Doyle was a fifth-round draft pick by the Detroit Pistons and went on to play professionally in France for 11 years. Ricky Doyle was born in Pau, France, in 1996. Rick was in the stands to watch the game, an FGCU spokesman said.

Quotable

“It was a good trip for us in terms of learning. (We played) three really good teams. Those three teams we played will all be the favorites in their conference. I told our guys just now I’m happy for them. We got the win. We’re making progress. I really liked the way they responded yesterday at halftime. You know, down, and came out and fought. Some good signs there.” — UTSA coach Steve Henson, on the team’s trip to Florida. (Interview on KTKR radio).

Daum, South Dakota State romp past UTSA, 99-79

When forward Mike Daum wasn’t hitting shots from outside the three-point arc Tuesday morning, guard Skyler Flatten was getting open and firing from some other far-away location.

Daum and Flatten combined for 11 three-pointers and 69 points as the South Dakota State Jackrabbits rolled past UTSA, 99-79, at the Gulf Coast Showcase.

Daum, a 6-9 senior forward, finished with 41 points on 14 of 25 shooting. The NBA prospect hit 5 of 12 three-point baskets. Flatten added 28 points on 10 of 11 from the floor. He was 6 of 6 from three.

Bidding for their fourth-straight trip to the NCAA Tournament this season, the Jackrabbits (4-2) of the Summit League showed that they’re warming up to meet the challenge.

They built an eight-point lead at halftime and then continued to pull away from the Roadrunners (0-5), who will close out the tournament with a third game in three days Wednesday morning.

Guard Keaton Wallace led UTSA with 21 points. Nick Allen had 12 and Atem Bior 11. Jhivvan Jackson scored 10 in his second game back to the lineup after rehabilitation from a knee injury.

Notable

With his performance against UTSA, Daum became South Dakota State’s all-time leading scorer. He has scored 2,388 points to surpass Nate Wolters’ record of 2,363, set in four seasons through 2013. Daum has scored 156 points in six games for an average of 26 per game, which likely will boost him into the national top ten.

Quotable

“The way they use him, the way they get him in different spots, it wasn’t like he was going to the same spot (on the floor). We couldn’t really double him. We tried some different people on him but … every second or third trip down the floor he was scoring again. He’s a terrific player.” — UTSA coach Steve Henson on trying to defend Mike Daum, South Dakota State’s all-time scoring leader. (Interview on KTKR radio).