WSU coach Nagy explains why 51 doesn’t equal 51 after tourney win

9:05 p.m Saturday, March 3, 2018 Sports

For the second game in a row, one the nation’s most efficient defenses gave up 51 points in a half.

And for the second game in a row, Wright State was good enough offensively to survive it, beating Green Bay 87-72 in the quarterfinals of the Horizon League tournament Saturday night at Little Caesar’s Arena in Detroit.

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The Raiders held the Phoenix to 21 points in the first half, the second fewest they’ve allowed all year (19 vs. IUPUI on Dec. 30). Then they allowed 51 in the second half, which equals the season-high 51 they allowed in the first half in the season finale at UIC.

But WSU coach Scott Nagy said there was a big difference between Green Bay’s 51 and UIC’s 51.

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“We see this a lot, because usually in the first half we get people shut down,” he said. “We do a pretty good job defensively and they stop running their stuff and then they just start going one on one.

“Because when you’re down, you’re desperate,” he added. “And you don’t worry about turning the ball over or taking a bad shot. You’ve just got to make a play. And there’s a different mentality. I’m not overly corned about 21-51. I think the 21 is what took them out of it.”

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The Raiders led 37-21 at halftime, and Green Bay never got any closer than 12 in the second half.