ASU men's basketball dominant in win over NAU

Romello White has a lights-out performance in ASU's blowout win over Northern Arizona

ASU men's basketball wasted no time pulling away from Northern Arizona at Wells Fargo Arena on Friday night, leading for most of the game and rolling to a 97-62 win.

ASU used a 16-3 run within the first 10 minutes of play to break open the game in the first half. Consecutive steals by Sun Devil senior guards Tra Holder and Shannon Evans II set the tone defensively for the home team. In the first 10 minutes alone, ASU had 16 points off turnovers.

NAU struggled finding the basket in the first half. By the 11-minute mark, it had only scored eight points — two field goals and the rest from the free throw line. 

Despite being inconsistent from the three point line in the first two games of the season, ASU picked up the slack in the first half against NAU. The team made 5-of-9 from 3-point range to help extend its lead to 31-13 with seven minutes left in the first half — three coming from senior forward Kodi Justice, who finished the half with 13 points on 80 percent shooting from beyond the arc.  

Although the visiting Lumberjack offense looked to be trending downward, it made a quick 7-0 run to bring them within 12 — the closest they came to ASU all night. 

The ASU big men duo of junior forward De’Quon Lake and redshirt freshman forward Romello White had another efficient night to help their team stay ahead. White continued his domination in the paint, using his right hook and strength to give him 16 first-half points on 6-for-7 shooting from the field.

Meanwhile, Lake controlled the glass once again by converting offensive rebounds into thunderous putback dunks and leading all players on the floor in total rebounds (six) in the first half.

The Sun Devils led 54-27 at the end of the first half.

Second half

Not much changed for the Sun Devils in the second half, as they extended their lead with a 15-2 run to put them ahead 72-36 with 12 minutes left in the game. During ASU’s run, Evans showcased his range by making three 3s in the span of about six minutes. He finished with 20 points on five-for-ten shooting. 

ASU finished the game shooting 55 percent from the field and 44 percent from beyond the arc. 

As for White, he showed no signs of slowing down and the Sun Devil guards showed no signs of shying away from him. His superiority in the paint and imprint on the game was obvious — he ended the night with 25 points, all coming from inside and the free throw line. 

On the defensive end, ASU refused to slow down and kept the pressure on NAU for the remainder of the game. The visiting team could not find its groove offensively, shooting below 25 percent from three and 32 percent from the field. The only highlight coming from the bench, where they outscored the Sun Devils 30-21.

Up next

ASU will face UC Irvine on Sunday, 6 p.m. MST at Wells Fargo Arena.

Reach the reporter at or follow @felipecorraljr on Twitter.  

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