Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports
The Sun Devils suffered their first loss at Wells Fargo Arena to DePaul 78-61. ASU got off to a fast start but cold shooting and lack of energy doomed the Sun Devils against the Blue Demons.
Herb Sendek waited a little longer to meet the media Wednesday night.
The Arizona State men's basketball coach had just watched his team lose to DePaul 78-61 in front of the 5,401 fans gathered at Wells Fargo Arena to watch the Sun Devils take on Big East competition.
There was a lot for Sendek to think about. Perhaps the stat that stuck out most was his team shooting just 42% from the free throw line. Maybe it was his bench being outscored 37-6 by the Blue Demons' reserves.
But what stuck out to the coach, was his team's lack of energy. A topic that was brought up in the post game press conference. A question that the coach did not have an answer for.
"You should have asked Carrick (Felix), and I mean no disrespect," said Sendek. "I had a lot of energy tonight."
The Sun Devils struggled shooting the ball, going 3-for-15 from three-point territory and just 8-for-19 from the charity stripe. DePaul shot 50% from the field in the contest and doubled ASU's second chance points, 12-6.
"They brought the energy and intensity," said Felix about DePaul. "That's something that we didn't bring today, and obviously they were the better team tonight."
The Sun Devils started the game on a 7-0 run, and led 13-8 with just over 13 minutes left in the first half. Jahii Carson scored seven points in the game's first five minutes, but was held to just five points the rest of the way.
"They started collapsing, triple and double teaming," said Carson about the DePaul defense. "They tried to take the ball out of my hands, I just wasn't in a rhythm in the second half.
The Sun Devils found themselves down 42-33 at halftime, only making one three point basket and shooting 6-for-13 from the free throw line in the first half.
"I don't think we made each other better, I don't think the ball went inside enough," said Sendek. "If you're 8-for-20 from the (free throw) line, you got to be dominant in some other category."
Arizona State had four players in double figures. Carrick Felix, Jahii Carson and Evan Gordon all chimed in with 12 points and Jordan Bachynski added 10 points and seven rebounds. The Sun Devils got outrebounded 44-34, including 12 offensive rebounds for DePaul, leading to 12 second chance points for the Blue Demons.
"They're an athletic team make no mistake about it," Sendek said. "But our leading rebounder is Jon (Gilling) and he isn't exactly the most athletic guy."
The Sun Devils bench was outscored by 31 points Wednesday night. Worrel Clahar and Moses Morgan both scored double figures off the bench for the Blue Demons, only Chris Colvin (4) and Ruslan Pateev (2) scored points off the bench for the Sun Devils.
"I think that they just wanted it more than us," said Jahii Carson about the Blue Demons. "They fought for loose balls, they dove for loose balls, they had energy from the tipoff," said Carson.
The Sun Devils (8-2) return to action at Wells Fargo Arena on Saturday afternoon against Dartmouth, with tipoff scheduled for 1 p.m.