LUBBOCK, Texas - Loyola University Maryland hit four 3-pointers in the game's first three minutes and led by as many as 11 early, but Texas Tech University came back to defeat the Greyhounds, 71-59, in the season-opener for both teams.
The game was a family reunion of sorts for the teams' head coaches as Loyola's G.G. Smith faced his mentor and father, the Red Raiders' Tubby Smith.
"It was great, it was a lot of fun," Loyola's Smiths said after the game. "In a way, I'm a little glad it's over; I am sure my mom is glad it's over."
Tyler Hubbard hit a pair of threes, and Franz Rassman added a third before Eric Laster hit the Greyhounds' fourth in as many attempts with 17:07 left in the first half, pushing Loyola (0-1 overall) up 10, 12-2.
Another Laster three with 15:00 on the clock made it 15-4 Loyola, and the junior guard would hit a basket in the paint 1:28 later to make it 17-6 in the Greyhounds' favor. Devaugntah Williams made a three for the Red Raiders, cutting their deficit to single digits with 12:33 in the frame, but Andre Walker scored his first collegiate points on an 18-foot jumper on the ensuing Loyola possession to push the lead back to 10.
Toddrick Gotcher and Williams made back-to-back threes for Texas Tech, cutting Loyola's lead to four, 19-15, and the Greyhounds would hold on to an advantage of fewer than five points for the next several mintues.
Norense Ordiase tied the game for the second time with a free throw at 5:00, but neither team scored for the next 1:17 until the Red Raiders took their first lead of the game, 30-29, on a Keenan Evans free throw. Evans later hit two more free throws with 52 ticks on the first-half clock to push Texas Tech up four, but Jarred Jones made two at the stripe for Loyola before the break to make it 35-33 Red Raiders at intermission.
Texas Tech used better defensive pressure and good post play early in the second half to build an 11-point lead, 49-38, on a Williams three with 14:44 left in regulation. The Red Raiders extended their lead to 16 on four occasions later in the half.
Walker led all scorers with 17 points in just 24 minutes of action for the Greyhounds, and Jones had a game-high 12 rebounds to go with nine points and two blocked shots.
Laster added 15 points, and Hubbard scored 12 for the Greyhounds, while Odiase led Texas Tech with 16 points and 10 rebounds in his collegiate debut. Denzel Brito had four assists for Loyola to lead all players.
Odiase was one of four Red Raiders in double figures, as Williams scored 13, and Evans and Gotcher each tallied 10.
The Greyhounds make their 2014-2015 home debut Sunday, Nov. 16, when they host Cornell University at 4 p.m. in Reitz Arena.