No. 2 Lions fall 3-2 to A&M-Kingsville on the final play of the night.
KINGSVILLE– The No. 2 Texas A&M University-Commerce softball team lost 3-2 to A&M-Kingsville on a walk-off hit Friday night. The Lions fell behind early, rallied to tie but ultimately could not come out on top.
The loss brings the Lions to 17-4 on the season and 6-1 in the Lone Star Conference. The Javelinas improved to 17-2 and 5-2 in conference play.
The Lions and Javelinas will return to the diamond Saturday for a doubleheader. The first game will begin at 1:00 p.m. at Hubert Field in Kingsville.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
– The Lions scored both of their runs in the 6th inning. Kayla Kilcrease (Kerens) had an RBI single to bring in the first run. Vanessa Muro (Oak Hills, Calif.) brought in the other.
– Kimber Neal (Humble – Atascocita) had the Lions’ first hit.
– Ciera Nunez (Amarillo – Randall) scored the first run. Ta’Lyn Moody (Mansfield – Legacy) also scored a run.
– Emily Otto (Richmond – Lamar Consolidated) pitched a complete game.
– The Lions struck out 15 times in the game, 11 of which were swinging strikeouts.
HEAD COACH RICHIE BRUISTER AFTER THE GAME
– On the team’s fight to get back in the game in the 6th inning: “I was proud of our team. They had our number to start with. We made some adjustments. I told our kids we were in a heavyweight fight. We got hit in the mouth and got knocked down, but were we going to get back up or not? We got back up, and I was proud of the way our team responded.”
– On the team’s resolve for tomorrow’s doubleheader: “We just got beat tonight. It was one of those things. They were better than us today. We will be back tomorrow and be better.”
HOW IT HAPPENED
Neither team could get a rally going in the first inning. Hill turned a double play on a line drive in the first inning to get the Lions out of the inning.
The Lions had a runner in scoring position after Hill drew a walk and also stole second. However, they could not get a hit to drive her in. The Javelinas then put together a rally. After a walk and a single, a bunt put the runners in scoring position, and a single scored both runners. The Lions trailed 2-0 after two complete.
The Lion defense stopped rallies in the third and fourth innings without allowing runs to come across. The Lions still were looking for their first hit of the contest.
Those hits would come in the sixth inning. Neal laid down a bunt, and the ball stayed fair as she raced down to first. Nunez reached on an error, and Moody reached on a fielder’s choice. Nunez scored on a single from Kilcrease. Moody then scored on a single from Muro. Otto drew three flyouts in the bottom of the sixth, and the teams were tied after six complete.
After The Lions struck out three times in the top of the seventh, the Javelinas were able to bring a run across. After a leadoff single, a bunt advanced the runner, and then a hard-hit ball through the right side plated the game’s final run.
Weather alters upcoming Men’s Golf schedule.
LUBBOCK – With inclement winter weather threatening Lubbock early next week, the Arbor Hotels Classic has been canceled. The Texas A&M University-Commerce men’s golf team will not be competing this week.
Coming off of a 13th place finish in the first event of the spring, the Lion men are next in action on March 18-19 at the Rogers State Hillcat Classic.
Late Lion comeback effort falls short in 102-92 loss at UT Permian Basin.
ODESSA – The Texas A&M University-Commerce men’s basketball nearly eliminated a 20-point second half deficit – trailing the University of Texas of the Permian Basin by only four points in the final minute – before ultimately falling 102-92 in the Falcon Dome on Thursday night.
With the loss, A&M-Commerce moves to 20-7 overall and 12-5 in the Lone Star Conference. UT Permian Basin is now 14-13 overall and 7-10 in the league.
The Lions play their final regular season game of the year at Western New Mexico on Saturday at 4:00 p.m. MST (5:00 p.m. CST).
COACH JARET VON ROSENBERG AFTER THE GAME
Thoughts on the night: “That’s a good offensive basketball team, and at the end of the day, if you give up 55 percent from the floor and 100 points, you are not going to win. I don’t care who you are. Everyone who played in the game made mistakes and everyone who played also did some positive things.”
On the defense: “Defensive breakdowns hurt us, and they made us pay. Defensively, we just didn’t look connected tonight. We ended up battling back, evening up some of the stats, which I thought we would. But they went on a run, and we got good shots but started the second half 3-for-15. Most of those were really good shots, and we just didn’t knock them down. And then we didn’t get stops. That’s what we’ve done to people, and they did it to us tonight.”
On the bench scoring: “Wayne almost had a double-double. Cal came in and gave us great minutes. It was good to see Austin back out there.”
On closing the regular season at Western New Mexico on Saturday: “We will rest up and prepare. We have to find a way to win, whether it’s by one or by 50. We will be looking to find a way to get a win down in Silver City.”
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
– The Lions made just under half of their field goal attempts, shooting 49.3 percent (33-of-67) from the floor. On the other end of the court, UT Permian Basin made 55.0 percent (33-of-60) of its shots, including 60.6 percent in the first half.
– Willie Rooks (Houston – North Forest) led five Lions in double-figure scoring, with 20 points, five rebounds, and six assists.
– Srdan Budimir (Karadjordjevo, Serbia) made three important late three-pointers on the way to 16 points with five rebounds.
– Wayne Stewart (Philadelphia, Pa.) was just shy of a double-double off the bench with 14 points and nine rebounds.
– Trey Conrod (Kilgore) scored 12 points with four assists and four rebounds.
– Deonta Terrell (Chicago, Ill.) netted 10 points off the bench.
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Lions roared out to an early lead, connecting on seven of their first eight shots – including three of four from three-point range. A&M-Commerce had taken a 17-11 lead with 15:34 to go at the game’s first media timeout.
Despite the early advantage, the Lion shooting cooled off while the Falcons stayed hot. The six-point margin was quickly eliminated, and the Falcons regained the lead at 25-24 with 11:31 left in half. The Lions flipped the point back in their favor briefly, but UTPB went on an 8-0 run. A pair of triples by the Falcon extended the lead, and the home side took a 54-42 lead into the dressing room at halftime.
Rooks netted the first three points of the second half to narrow the deficit back to single digits, but eight straight UTPB points gave the hosts momentum. Long-range shooting success for UT Permian Basin in the second half allowed the Falcons to stretch the lead to 20 points at 82-62 with just over seven minutes remaining.
A quick 10-3 run, including a Clarence Evans (Austin – Aggieland) fastbreak three-pointer, gave the Lions a glimpse at the comeback possibility. Even trailing by 12 points inside the final minute and a half, the Lions continued to battle. Budimir sank a trio of three-pointers in the last minutes, with the second long-range jumper cutting the lead to 95-89, and the third cutting the edge to four points at 96-92 in the final 30 seconds.
The Falcons connected on a pair of free throws to go back up by six, and a Lion three-point attempt rattled out. TAMUC was enticed to foul and take forced shots in the final seconds, and UTPB finished off the game with seven consecutive made free throws.
Lions roll to 88-70 victory at UT Permian Basin.·
ODESSA – The Texas A&M University-Commerce women’s basketball team had every player score and rolled to an 88-70 victory over the University of Texas of the Permian Basin in the Falcon Dome on Thursday night.
With the win, A&M-Commerce moves to 18-9 overall and 13-6 in the Lone Star Conference. UT Permian Basin falls to 4-23 overall and 1-18 in the league.
The Lions play their final regular season game of the year at Western New Mexico on Saturday at 4 p.m. MST (5 p.m. CST).
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
– Princess Davis (Shreveport, La.) led four Lions in double figures with 15 points, as well as two rebounds and two assists.
– Alexus Jones (Lewisville – Aledo) scored 13 points thanks to a perfect 7-of-7 rate at the free throw line.
– Chania Wright (DeSoto) scored 12 points and grabbed five rebounds. She scored 10 points in the first quarter to help boost the Lions to an early lead.
– Alexis Bryant (Pflugerville) netted 11 points and five rebounds. Ekaterina Zhibareva (Liske, Russia) scored eight points and grabbed a team-high six rebounds.
– Mykiel Burleson (Pflugerville) scored nine points, all on three-pointers.
– The Lions shot 48.3 percent (29-of-60) and connected on over 60 percent of their shots in the first and third quarters.
– A&M-Commerce sank 23-of-27 (85.2 percent) of its free throws.
– UTPB’s Kahli Pippins-Tryon scored 30 points.
HEAD COACH JASON BURTON AFTER THE GAME
– On the team’s play: “I thought we came out in the first quarter hungry and after a setback in the second quarter, the halftime talk fixed some things, and we jumped out in the third quarter and controlled the game the rest of the way. Everybody got a chance to play, and we got to keep people fresh.”
– On the team’s execution: “When I look at this game, it is fun seeing this team lock into a game plan and to see them execute at a high level. We came in and did a good job against the zone. And we got back to our press. That is something that will be effective for us in the conference tournament.”
– On the importance of Saturday’s game: “Saturday is a big game for us. It is another regional game for us. If we can get two on the road this trip, we feel really good going into the conference tournament.”
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Lions shot the lights out in the first quarter and also held the Falcons off the board to help build a sizeable lead. UTPB had an early 5-2 lead before A&M-Commerce surged for a 10-0 run which included a Wright three-pointer and a Jones three-point play. An eight-point Lion rally with three-pointers by Wright and Burleson put the Lions up 20-9 with 3:22 left in the quarter.
Even with the double-digit lead, the Lions applied high pressure in the front-court and outscored their hosts in the final three minutes by a 9-7 count. The Lions shot 61.1 percent in the quarter and held a 29-16 lead at the end of the frame.
The game got rough in the second quarter, as both teams had abnormally high turnover totals. As such, the scoring rate slowed for both sides. UTPB was able to connect on long-range attempts, making 4-of-5 three-pointers. The Lions attempted only nine field goals in the period, connecting on just two, but were able to make 8-of-10 free throws, and took a 42-33 lead into the halftime locker room. The teams combined for 27 turnovers in the first half, with the Lions losing the ball 12 times to the Falcons’ 15.
A&M-Commerce resumed its offensive dominance in the third quarter, connecting on two-thirds of its shots in the period. Zhibareva scored two straight baskets in the early going to put the Lions back up by double digits. A Davis triple and a pair of Jones free throws had the Lions ahead 50-35 with just three minutes gone in the third period. Late in the period, Burleson drained a three-pointer, followed by a Bryant layup to give the Lions their first 20-point lead at 68-47. TAMUC would take a 70-53 lead into the final period of action.
With the large lead, the Lions made sure the bench players contributed and kept the Falcons at a distance. A&M-Commerce was able to extend the lead to as many as 25 points in the latter stages of the contest.
Associate Athletics Director for Marketing and Communications | Texas A&M University-Commerce
Committed to a “Best In Class” student-athlete experience.
Office: 903.886.5131 | Mobile: 817.487.5136 |
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 3011 | Commerce, TX 75429
Physical Address: 2600 Neal Street | Commerce, TX 75429
Connect with us on our Lions’ Den Social Stream.
Director of Athletic Communications | Texas A&M University-Commerce
Office: 903.468.3027 | Mobile: 801.624.8529
Follow us: @Lion_Athletics | Facebook | YouTube | Instagram | LionAthletics.com
Committed to a “Best in Class” student-athlete experience.