MONTICELLO, Ark. – Despite a game-high 24 points from Sami Bzai on 6-of-9 shooting from behind the arc, Southeastern was unable to stop Arkansas-Monticello's offense which shot 54.8 percent as the Savage Storm came out on the short end of an 82-64 final score.
The loss drops SE to 6-12 overall and 4-8 in Great American Conference play heading into a Saturday afternoon contest at Southern Arkansas at 3 p.m. in Magnolia, Ark.
Bzai was the only real offensive highlight for the Storm as he turned in his fifth 20-point game of the season and the second in his last three outings. He did so by going 6-of-9 from beyond the arc and 9-of-14 overall from the floor.
DJ Henderson was the team's other double-digit scorer as he came off the bench to add 12 points with a pair of threes, while Anton Cook and Tyler Lonzie just missed the double-digit mark, finishing with nine each while Nathan Jackson was right behind with eight.
Quinton Threadgill and Marti Fonolla dished out three assists each as the storm had 12 assists as a team.
SE shot 44.6 percent from the floor and 42.9 percent from behind the arc on 9-of-21 threes, but found stopping the home team difficult as the Boll Weavils hit 54.8 percent and 50 percent form long range.
SE was on the wrong end of the rebounding battle as well even though the total number of rebounds was low due to the team's shooting so well, with Lonzie and Kyle Roberts leading Southeastern with four each as UAM held a 34-to-29 edge on the glass.
Lonzie would score the game's first points, but UAM answered with a 9-0 run to mount an early lead.
SE chipped away, tying the game on a Jackson jumper and eventually taking the lead again at 18-16 on a Cook jumper with 10:09 to go in the first half.
The Storm would regain the lead again later on a Bzai three at 24-21 with 7:01 to go in the half, but aside from tying the game at 27-27 the remainder of the half belonged to the home team who would pull out to a 38-31 lead at halftime.
Southeastern would twice close the deficit to five points, the last time coming on a Henderson layup with 16:03 to play.
UAM answered at that point with a 13-2 run to go up 57-41 and the Storm never recovered , closing the gap to 14 points at one point and 15 points inside the final three minutes, but were unable to truly mount a rally, falling 82-64.