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TAMUC – Sports

Slow first half hurts Lions in 75-60 loss to A&M-Kingsville.

KINGSVILLE – The Texas A&M University-Commerce men’s basketball team fell 75-60 to A&M-Kingsville on Saturday afternoon. The Lions experienced a cold spell late in the first half to fall behind, and could not find enough time to complete a comeback. 

The loss brings the Lions to 10-5 on the season and 6-3 in the Lone Star Conference. The Javelinas improve to 12-3 on the year and 8-1 in conference play. 

The Lions return home to face Arkansas Fort Smith on Thursday. The game will be at 7:30 pm at the Field House. 

HEAD COACH JARET von ROSENBERG AFTER THE GAME

– On the struggles in the game: “You can’t go on the road against a good opponent and have ten total mental lapses and just not play the way we want to play. You are going to have some of those in a game, but when you play a good team, you have no room for error.”

– On the defense: “We did an ok job of first shot defense, but bailed them out too many times with fouls or giving up offensive rebounds. We were a step late at times. We have to give Coach Estelle credit because they do that to you because of the pace they play at.”

– Thoughts on the game: “The bottom line was we just weren’t good enough tonight. I’m not worried about this game as far as moving forward. This kind of game is going to happen, where you get punched in the mouth on the road. That’s what the Lone Star is. They just had our number tonight.” 

INSIDE THE BOX SCORE

– Wayne Stewart (Philadelphia, Pa.) led the way with 23 points, shooting 8-of-12 from the field.

– Josh Winbush (Lake Charles, La.) added 10 points and a team-high six rebounds.

– The Lions were -15 on the boards.

– The Lions had just nine turnovers in the game, but A&M-Kingsville had 33 free throws in the game. 

HOW IT HAPPENED

The Lions struck first on a three-ball before A&M-Kingsville began a 9-0 run to take the lead early on. The teams then started to trade buckets, as the Lions looked to cut into the Javelina lead. 

A&M-Kingsville pushed its lead to nine points with 10 minutes to go before the Lions went on a run of their own to cut into the deficit. A three from Moreno and a pair of inside buckets from Winbush had the Lions trailing by just four with seven minutes left in half. 

However, A&M-Kingsville closed the half on another big run, scoring 13 of the final 17 points to take a 38-25 lead into halftime. 

The Lions shot 35 percent in the first half while the Javelinas shot 46 percent. Winbush led the team with eight points in the half, while Stewart added seven. 

The Lions continued to fight, cutting the lead down to 10 points two minutes into the half. Another jumper from Stewart cut the lead to single digits before the Javelinas again went on a run to lead by 14. 

The Lions again fought back, going on a 7-2 run to cut the lead to single digits, including a three from Austin Grandstaff (Rockwall). It was a run matched by the Hogs as the edge was again 14 points with 10 minutes to play. 

The Lions made a couple of mini runs to cut the lead down to single digits, but could not prevent the Javelinas from matching those runs. The Lions ran out of opportunities to complete the comeback.

The second half explosion lifts No. 5 Lions to 72-54 win over A&M-Kingsville.

KINGSVILLE – The No. 5 Texas A&M University-Commerce women’s basketball team picked up a 72-54 win over Texas A&M-Kingsville on Saturday afternoon. After a tightly contested first half, the Lions jumped out hot in the second half to run away with the win. 

The win brings the Lions to 15-0 on the season and 9-0 in the Lone Star Conference. The Javelinas fall to 3-8 on the year and 2-7 in conference play. 

The Lions return home to face Arkansas Fort Smith on Thursday. The game will be at 5:30 pm at the Field House. 

HEAD COACH JASON BURTON AFTER THE GAME

– On the win: “This was a huge game. It is the first game of the second half of the season, and we needed to find a way to get this win. And that is our ninth conference win in a row. That’s what is important right now because it is a marathon with 22 conference games. To be able to get wins on the road in this conference is huge.”

– Key to the win: “We did a good job of taking care of the basketball. I thought that was the difference in the game. We got outrebounded for maybe the first time all year. But to not get those extra shots we usually get, we needed to find a way to take care of the basketball.”

INSIDE THE BOX SCORE

– Chania Wright (DeSoto) led the way with 18 points, hitting eight shots while also grabbing four rebounds.

– Juliana Louis (Long Beach, Calif.) added 11 points and five rebounds, scoring five of her seven shots. She also had seven steals.

– Alexis Bryant (Pflugerville) also had 11 points and five rebounds and led the way defensively with a pair of blocks.

– The Lions scored 32 points off of 26 Javelina turnovers and had 21 fast-break points in the game.

– A&M-Commerce led by as many as 26 and led for more than 39 minutes in the game. 

HOW IT HAPPENED

It was a slow start on offense for both teams, as each team had just one field goal in the first four minutes of the game. The Lions were then able to build a lead on a 10-0 run over the next several minutes to lead 12-3. The Javelinas hit a pair of late threes to get their offense going. A&M-Commerce led 16-11 at the quarter break. 

The Lions got off to a hot start to begin the second quarter. Wright hit three open buckets early as part of an 8-0 run that gave the Lions a double-figure lead, leading 24-11. The Javelinas fought back to get within seven points late in half. The Lions went into halftime with a 31-23 lead. 

The Lions shot 42 percent in the first half, including 60 percent in the first quarter with Wright leading the team with six points, while Louis added five. The Lions caused 13 Javelina turnovers in half, turning them into 13 points. A&M-Kingsville was able to grab nine offensive rebounds, which led to 13 second-chance points. 

The Lions began the second half on a tear, scoring the first 10 points of the half. The Lion defense swarmed the Javelinas and again caused problems, which the Lions turned into easy offense. Another quick run put the Lions up by 20 points, as the Lion press defense began to wear on A&M-Kingsville. At the end of the third quarter, the Lions held a 54-29 lead. 

 A&M-Kingsville fought early in the quarter to cut the Lion led from 20 down to just 15 points. However, the Lions kept their pressure and continued to cause turnovers, getting the win.

 

Chania Wright named Under Armour Student-Athlete of the Week.

COMMERCE – Texas A&M University-Commerce women’s basketball sharpshooter Chania Wright has been named the Under Armour Student-Athlete of the Week by Lion Athletics. 

Wright– a junior from DeSoto– has had a spectacular last four games for the Lions. Before the winter break, she helped lead the Lions to a pair of road wins against Tarleton and TWU, earning LSC Defensive Player of the Week honors. Her defensive effort helped lead to multiple turnovers and baskets for the Lion offense. 

Then, in the first homestand of the 2020 calendar year, Wright had the most explosive week of her collegiate career. She set her career-high in points on Thursday against Cameron, only to tie it in the first half against Midwestern State, and eventually surpass it on Saturday. Against Cameron, Wright had 25 points with 11 made baskets, including a trio of threes from beyond the arc. After setting her career-high, Wright tied that in the first half against Midwestern State. She finished the game with 33 points in just 22 minutes of action. Chania scored 25 points in the first half and 19 points in the second quarter. She went 12-of-17 from the field and hit five threes and four free throws in the game. In all, she averaged 29 points per game. 

Over the four-game stretch, Wright averaged 23.5 points and 2.5 steals per game, while shooting 52 percent from the field and 46 percent from three. 

The Under Armour Student-Athlete of the Week will be awarded by Lion Athletics each week during the academic year. 

2019-20 UNDER ARMOUR STUDENT-ATHLETES OF THE WEEK

Sept. 10 – Timon Kemboi, Men’s Cross Country

Sept. 17 – E.J. Thompson, Football

Sept. 24 – Cora Welch, Soccer

Oct. 1 – Sydney Andersen, Volleyball

Oct. 8 – Brandi Stalder, Women’s Cross Country

Oct. 15 – Dominique Ramsey, Football

Oct. 22 – Shelley Chapron, Volleyball

Oct. 29 – Miklo Smalls, Football

Nov. 5 – Leslie Campuzano, Soccer

Nov. 12 – Dyani Robinson, Women’s Basketball

Nov. 27 – Alexis Bryant, Women’s Basketball & Alex Shillow, Football

Dec. 4 – Preston Wheeler & Elijah Earls, Football

Dec. 13 – Malcolm Woods, Men’s Track & Field

Dec. 18 – Wayne Stewart, Men’s Basketball

Jan. 8 – Chania Wright, Women’s Basketball