Written by Justin Prince.
The Marshall men’s basketball team wasn’t just battling the Bulldogs of Louisiana Tech Saturday night; it was also battling the flu.
A few nights after the flu bug kept C.J. Burks on the sidelines the illness severely limited Ajdin Penava. The 6-10 European who came in averaging a double-double was only able to muster two rebounds and scored zero points.
But, Burks was back to his old self scoring 23 points on 8-15 from the field and his backcourt mate Jon Elmore scored 32 points and nabbed nine rebounds to lead the Herd to a big conference victory over L.A. Tech, 78-65.
The Bulldogs were picked to finish second in CUSA by the media in the preseason fell to 0-2 in league play after suffering a one-point loss to Western Kentucky on Thursday.
The Herd led by five at the half 36-31 and never led by less than four the rest of the way. A DaQuan Bracey lay-up made it 49-45 with 12:23 remaining in the game but, the Herd used 15-5 run to pull away and led by as many as 19.
The win improved Marshall to 10-0 at home on the season and 2-0 in Conference play. The 11-4 overall record is the best start in the first 15 games of a season in the D’antoni era.
Jacobi Boykins led the Bulldogs with 15 and Bracey added 14 but it wasn’t enough to overcome the 55 combined points by Elmore and Burks. Jarrod West chipped in 12, all on three-pointers and Rondale Watson added six, four rebounds and three steals.
Marshall will get a week off before taking on rival WKU next Saturday, January 6 at 6 p.m. eastern time from the Cam Henderson Center.
See more photos from Joshua Murdock below: