Norchad Omier collected his seventh consecutive double-double with 23 points and 13 rebounds, both game highs, to lead the Arkansas State men’s basketball team to a 67-60 Sun Belt Conference victory over Texas State Saturday afternoon at First National Bank Arena.
A-State picked up its third consecutive victory to run its overall record to 13-4 and Sun Belt Conference mark to 4-1. The Red Wolves now hold a 13-4 or better record through 17 games for the first time since 1988-89 and just the fourth time in school history (2021-22, 1988-89, 1965-66, 1950-51).
With the victory, A-State took over sole possession of second place in the league standings and could take over first if Troy loses at Louisiana tonight. The Red Wolves also improved their home record to 9-1 and snapped a three-game winning streak by Texas State, which moved to 12-5 overall and 3-2 in league play.
Omier was one of three A-State players scoring in double figures as he was joined by guards Desi Sills and Marquis Eaton with 21 and 11, respectively. Sills led all A-State scorers in the second half with 14 points, and Omier scored 12 over the final 20 minutes, to help the Red Wolves surge past the Bobcats in a game that was tied 32-32 at the break.
A-State finished with a slightly higher field goal percentage, .483 to .471, but limited Texas State to 10-of-26 shooting in the second half and turned the ball over just twice. The Red Wolves also finished with a 31-29 rebounding advantage and handed out 11 more assists than the Bobcats.
The opening half featured two ties and five lead changes as neither team led by more than six points, but the Red Wolves went on a 12-2 run over the first four minutes of the second half to take the game’s first double-digit lead at 44-34. They extended their lead to as much as 11 points twice, the last a 48-37 advantage with 13:45 remaining.
The Bobcats capped a 12-4 run with a pair of free throws to pull back within 52-49 at the 7:03 mark, but guard Avery Felts hit a big three on A-State’s ensuing possession to start a 7-0 burst by the Red Wolves. Texas State was able to trim its deficit back down to four points, 62-58, with just over a minute left in the contest, but couldn’t get any closer.
The Bobcats were led by two players scoring in double figures, including Isiah Small with a team-high 17 points and 10 rebounds. A-State held the Bobcats’ leading scorer this season, Caleb Asberry, to nine points.
Arkansas State returns to action Thursday, Jan. 27, with a 5:30 p.m. (CT) road game at Appalachian State. The contest will appear on ESPN+, and every A-State men’s basketball game can be heard on the EAB Red Wolves Sports Network, including flagship station 107.9 FM in the Northeast Arkansas area.