HOT SPRINGS, Ark. -- T.J. Price scored 18 points Friday night and Western Kentucky never trailed in beating Louisiana-Monroe 74-60 in the first round of the Sun Belt Conference tournament.
George Fant scored 12 on 6-of-6 shooting for the Hilltoppers (17-15), who are the sixth seed in the tournament. They meet No. 3 seed South Alabama in Saturday's quarterfinals.
Ten players scored for Western Kentucky, which shot 69 percent in the first half on the way to a 46-24 lead. The Hilltoppers finished at 58 percent.
Western Kentucky is the defending Sun Belt tournament champion, having won as the No. 7 seed last season.