The Old Dominion Monarchs hammered the short-handed UTSA Roadrunners with a 19-2 run in the second half Thursday night en route to an easy 83-51 victory in Conference USA men’s basketball.
In the game played at Norfolk, Va., the Roadrunners were playing without starters Cedrick Alley, Jr., and Jordan Ivy-Curry and still were within 13 points with 16 minutes left.
The Monarchs answered by turning up the intensity behind Jaylin Hunter and C.J. Keyser to push the lead to 30, at 61-31, with 10:38 remaining.
From there, UTSA was doomed to an 0-4 start in conference, with one loss by 32, one by 28 and another by 16. Old Dominion shot 62 percent from the field on the way to a 2-0 C-USA record.
The Roadrunners shot 39 percent from the field. They hit only 1 of 13 from three-point range. Erik Czumbel scored a season-high 16 for UTSA and Jacob Germany 12.
For the Monarchs, Austin Trice had 19, while Hunter and Keyser added 16 apiece. Combined, the threesome hit 22 of 32 shots from the floor.
“Never got any rhythm going offensively, and defensively, it was pretty disappointing,” UTSA coach Steve Henson told the team’s radio broadcast.
UTSA 7-10, 0-4
Old Dominion 7-8, 2-0
Saturday — UTSA at Charlotte, noon
When the Roadrunners stepped on the court against the Monarchs, they were without two starters, power forward Cedrick Alley Jr. and guard Jordan Ivy-Curry.
A UTSA spokesman said in a text that Alley is out for the year because of academic eligibility. Ivy-Curry is in Covid protocols, he added.
Alley played 15 games and started 14 for the Roadrunners. He averaged 9.3 points and a team-leading 6.8 rebounds. With Alley out, it means that the Roadrunners have lost two starters for the season in the last two weeks.
Last week, UTSA announced that Dhieu Deing was no longer on the team and planned to pursue a professional career. Deing was UTSA’s leading scorer with 15.3 points per game.
Ivy-Curry apparently did not travel, so he will be out a minimum of two games, against Old Dominion and against Charlotte on Saturday. It’s the second time that Ivy-Curry, the team’s second-leading scorer, averaging 15.1, has been in Covid protocols this season.
He also sat out two games in December.
The game at Old Dominion marked the first of three straight for the Roadrunners in conference away from home.
Old Dominion built a 33-21 lead in the first half. Perhaps predictably, the Monarchs jumped on the Roadrunners early, forging leads of 7-0 and 16-2. Outside of scoring bursts from Erik Czumbel and Jacob Germany, UTSA trailed by double digits for most of the rest of the half. Forward Austin Trice hit 7 of 7 shots from the field for 15 points to lead the Monarchs. As a team, ODU hit 15 of 25 for 60 percent. UTSA was 7 of 25 for 28 percent. Czumbel hit 5 of 7 for 11 points.