DENTON – The University of North Texas men’s basketball team earned its 25th win of the season, adding to its single-season program record, with a 67-33 rout of Western Kentucky on Saturday at the UNT Coliseum.
The Mean Green held Western Kentucky scoreless over the game’s first five minutes as it built a 10-0 lead.
A dunk by center Jamarion Sharp sparked a Western Kentucky run that cut the lead to two, but UNT shot 52% from the floor and outscored the Hilltoppers 15-2 over the final 5:42 of the half to take a commanding 38-18 lead.
The second half began in an eerily similar fashion as Western Kentucky shot 1-9 from the field and went over nine minutes without scoring, and UNT increased its lead to as many as 36 points.
This time, however, the Hilltoppers had no answers, and the Mean Green ran away with the win on Senior Day.
UNT held WKU to just 15 points on 4-25 shooting in the second half.
UNT senior guard Tylor Perry led the Mean Green with 19 points, while sophomore forward Aaron Scott added 11.
No player on Western Kentucky scored more than eight points.
WHAT TO KNOW
— UNT has now won five games in a row over Western Kentucky.
— North Texas (25-6, 16-4 Conference USA) finishes the season in second place in Conference USA, trailing Florida Atlantic (27-3, 17-2), which plays later Saturday. The Mean Green won the Conference USA regular season title in 2022.
— UNT is the 17th Division I basketball program to reach 25 wins this season.
–With a 6-14 shooting performance that included 4-11 from three, Perry moved into seventh place in UNT history in three-pointers made.
–North Texas ends the regular season winning 20 of its last 24 games. UNT has a 55-15 record in Conference USA play over the last four seasons, the best in the conference.
— Saturday’s win ties the program record for conference wins in one season with 16.
— The 33 points is the lowest point total for Western Kentucky in 1946.
BY THE NUMBERS
— North Texas entered Saturday’s game with the nation’s second-best scoring defense, allowing 56.1 points per game. The Mean Green held Western Kentucky to 33 points. The previous low point total for UNT opponents this season had been 45 against both Nebraska-Omaha and Charlotte.
— Western Kentucky entered the game on a streak of 1,131 consecutive games with a made three-pointer and shooting 36.8% from behind the arc this season. On Saturday, the Hilltoppers shot just 18.2% from three-point range but did extend their streak with two makes.
— Western Kentucky shot a season-low 28.6% from the field, beating its previous low of 36.5% against Florida Atlantic on January 28.
–Perry on the team’s mentality for the postseason
“Win at all costs. We know what’s at stake, we know what we’re fighting for, and we know what we want to do, and so it’s super important to win at all costs and we’re laying everything on the line.”
— North Texas (25-6,16-4 Conference USA) will be the No. 2- seed in the Conference USA tournament and play the winner of the 7/10 matchup on Thursday, March 9, at 8 p.m. CT as it tries to earn a berth in the NCAA tournament.