Lions dig themselves out of the first-half hole but can’t hold on against ENMU, fall 72-65
COMMERCE– The Texas A&M University-Commerce men’s basketball team lost a heartbreaker to Eastern New Mexico on Saturday. The Lions trailed by 19 at the half and retook the lead late in the second half only to have it slip away.
The loss drops the Lions to 16-6 on the season and 8-5 in the Lone Star Conference. ENMU jumps to 9-14 and 3-10 in conference play.
The Lions return to action on Thursday as they host Angelo State University. The game will start at 7:30 p.m. at the Field House.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
– A&M-Commerce took its first lead of the match with four and a half minutes to play in the game after trailing by as many as 23 early in the second half. However, the Lions could not build a lead higher than two points and fell in the final minute of the game.
– Malik Albert led the Lions with 24 points. He also tallied two steals and three blocks.
– Montrell Little scored 19 points and grabbed nine rebounds.
– Trey Seymore scored eight points to go along with five rebounds and six assists.
– The Lions scored 23 points off of 19 ENMU turnovers.
– The Lions struggled from behind the arc, shooting 3-of-22 (13.6%) from three. The Greyhounds shot 6-of-10 from downtown.
– Four Greyhounds finished in double figures, with Chris Lewis, Chris Wyms, and Lamarquis Thompson each scoring 13 points. Joe Clarke added 12 for ENMU.
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Lions fell behind early as the Greyhounds got off to a 7-2 lead after the first three minutes of the game. Little scored the first two baskets for the Lions, and Albert then had three consecutive shots fall from inside the paint, one of which was a dunk. With seven minutes gone in the first half, the Lions trailed by one.
ENMU then went up 9-0 over a two-minute stretch to take a double-digit lead midway through the first half. Four different Greyhounds scored as part of the run. The Lions fought back, with Little, Albert and Seymore all getting buckets to cut the lead down to just six with five minutes to play.
ENMU finished the first half on a 13-0 run and took a 40-21 lead into the half. Albert had 12 points at halftime for the Lions. Little added seven. Just three Lions got on the scoreboard in the first half.
The Greyhounds pushed their lead to a game-high 23 points with 16 minutes left in the second half. After that, the Lions responded with 34-10 run to take the lead with four and a half minutes left in the game.
Albert converted a three-point play and had nine points as part of the field. Little and Seymore chipped in as well, with Little scoring seven points and Daquane Willford scoring six points. Willford got into the lane and buried a layup to give the Lions their first lead with 4:39 to play.
The Greyhounds took the lead back on the next possession. Albert then had a layup to put the Lions ahead once again, 62-61. However, two was as large as the Lion lead would get. ENMU hit a three on its next possession to go up by one. Then, after a layup by Little at the 2:20 mark, the Lions took their final lead of the game.
A&M-Commerce was held scoreless for the final two minutes, and the Greyhounds converted their free throws down the stretch to extend their lead out of reach.
Men’s basketball moves up one spot to No. 4 in D2SIDA South Central Region Media Poll; NCAA Rankings begin next week
COMMERCE – The Texas A&M University-Commerce men’s basketball team returned to the fourth spot in the South Central Regional poll in this week’s 2016-17 D2SIDA Men’s Basketball Division II Media Poll. The official NCAA Division II rankings begin next week.
The Lions are currently 16-6 overall after splitting last week’s games, defeating Western New Mexico and falling to Eastern New Mexico.
A&M-Commerce received 32 points overall. The Lions play twice at home this week, hosting Angelo State on Thursday at 7:30 p.m., and playing A&M-Kingsville on Saturday at 4 p.m.
The Lions are one of six teams from the LSC in the rankings. UT Permian is ranked first in the region followed by Tarleton State. West Texas A&M is sixth, A&M-Kingsville is seventh, and Angelo State is ninth.
2016-17 D2SIDA Men’s Basketball Media Poll
as of February 6, 2017
|Rank||School (First Place Votes)||Record||Points||Prev.|
|1||UT Permian Basin (5)||18-4||50||1|
|6||West Texas A&M||19-6||27||4|
Women’s basketball knocks off conference-leading Eastern New Mexico 85-67
COMMERCE– The Texas A&M University-Commerce women’s basketball team got a dominating 85-67 win over Eastern New Mexico on Saturday. The Lions took control of the game in the third quarter and ran away from the conference-leading Greyhounds.
The win brings the Lions to 16-6 on the season and 10-4 in the Lone Star Conference. It is the first time the Lions have had double-digit conference wins since the 2006-07 season. ENMU falls to 16-5 and 12-2 in conference play.
The Lions return to action on Thursday as they host Angelo State University. The game will start at 5:30 p.m. at the Field House.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
– The win brings the Lions to 10-4 in conference play. That is their highest conference win total since the 2006-07 season.
– Brianna Wise led the Lions with a career-high 22 points. She shot 6-of-10 from the field and was a perfect 7-of-7 from the foul line. She also had six rebounds.
– Artaejah Gay had 19 points and pulled down four boards.
– Khala Riley scored 14 points and had a game-high seven assists.
– Krystal Pickron had 11 points and eight rebounds.
– The Lions got to the free throw line 37 times in the game and converted 87 percent of their free throws.
– A&M-Commerce outscored ENMU 22-7 in the third quarter.
– Kassandra Harris scored 18 points to lead ENMU. Sarina Johnson had 12 points, and Jasmine Hotchkins added 11 for the Greyhounds.
– The Greyhounds were held to just 23 percent from the field in the second half.
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Lions fell behind early with two quick turnovers to the Greyhounds. Wise hit two free throws to start the scoring for the Lions, but back-to-back threes from ENMU put the Greyhounds up by seven after the first two and a half minutes.
The Lions found their groove after that, going on a 15-0 run to take the lead. Riley got to the line for two and then found Wise on the next possession for a three. Gay had two consecutive buckets, and the Lions took an eight-point lead with three minutes to play in the quarter. Brittany Adams came into the game midway through the quarter and got to the foul line six times, converting five as part of the run.
The Greyhounds began a run of their own late in the quarter to close the gap. The Lions took a 25-22 lead into the second quarter.
The second quarter started as a heavyweight bout with both teams striking with baskets as well as defensive plays. The teams went back and forth for the first five and a half minutes of the quarter, with multiple lead changes and ties. Midway through the quarter, the game tied at 35.
The Greyhounds started to pull away midway through the quarter, going on a 7-0 surge. The Lions answered right back to cut the lead down to two with three minutes to go. Gay hit a jumper, and Wise hit another three.
Both teams struggled from the field to end the half. The opponent held the Lions without a basket for the final three minutes, and the Greyhounds were forced to score from the foul line, getting two late trips to the charity stripe. A&M-Commerce went into halftime down 46-42.
Wise led the Lions with 11 points in the first half, shooting 3-of-4 from behind the arc. Riley added 10 points and five assists, making all four of her free throws. Gay had eight points to aid the Lions. Harris had 13 points in the first half for ENMU.
The Lions went on a tear to start the third quarter. They held the Greyhounds scoreless for the first six and a half minutes of the half. Meanwhile, the Lions scored 11 points during that span. Riley hit two free throws and a jumper as part of the run. The Lions led by seven with three minutes to play in the third quarter.
After ENMU had broken its scoring drought, Pickron hit four consecutive free throws and Wise converted a three-point play to put the Lions up double-digits. Wise scored the final five points of the third quarter as the Lions took a 64-53 lead into the final period.
The Lions continued to pour it on, scoring eight of the first 10 points of the fourth quarter. The Greyhounds scored five unanswered to cut the lead down to 12, but the Lions answered back with a 9-0 run to bring their lead to 21, the largest of the game.
Pair of homers powers Lions to 7-1 win over Newman on Opening Day
MAGNOLIA, Ark. – The Texas A&M University-Commerce softball team started the 2017 season off on a winning note with a 7-1 victory over Newman University in the opening game of the Southern Arkansas Softball Invitational on Friday afternoon.
The Lions are 1-0 on the season and have now won the first game of the season in all three years of the program’s existence.
A&M-Commerce plays twice Saturday, facing off against Washburn at noon, followed by a rematch with Newman at 5 p.m.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
– The Lions pounded out 12 hits in the game, led by three hits apiece from Baylea Higgs and Tyler Oppenheim.
– Mariah Jameyson and Kinsie Hebler each blasted home runs in their Lion debut.
– Hebler and Chealsea Slider had a pair of hits each. Both of Hebler’s were for extra bases.
– Katie Dean (1-0) picked up the complete-game win, allowing one earned run on four hits, with two strikeouts and a walk.
– The Lions stole seven bases in the game, led by Higgs’ three steals. Oppenheim had two steals.
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Lions scored the first run of the season in the bottom of the second inning. After Precious Thompson stole second base, Oppenheim laced a single up the middle to score the run and give A&M-Commerce the early 1-0 lead.
Newman responded in the top of the third, as a runner scored from third on a wild pitch to tie the game.
The Lions regained the lead in the bottom of the fifth. Oppenheim hit an infield single to lead off the frame, then stole second. Monica Cherry reached base on an error, allowing Oppenheim to score. After a Higgs single, Jameyson homered to left-center, pushing the Lion lead to 5-1.
Hebler came to the plate with two out in the sixth and Oppenheim on second. The freshman smoked a homer to left field to cap the scoring and push the Lions to their first win of the year.
Head Coach Richie Bruister after the game:
“Katie Dean did an outstanding job today in the circle, pitching a complete game. It’s outstanding to do that on Opening Day. We gave up four hits with a lot of easy ground balls and fly balls with no errors on defense. Baylea Higgs made a run-saving diving catch in left-center, a Gold Glove-type play. Precious Thompson at third and Monica Cherry at second were making some really big defensive plays, and I’m extremely excited about our defense. That kept us in the ballgame and excited our offense, who had some big hits and showed our speed. All in all, a great day. I’m happy all the way around. We showed power, speed, and great defense, and that’s all you can ask for on Opening Day.”
Lions take pair over Washburn and Newman to move to 3-0
MAGNOLIA, Ark. – The Texas A&M University-Commerce softball team swept two games in the Southern Arkansas Softball Invitational on Saturday. The Lions defeated Washburn, 6-2, in the day’s first game, then took a 7-4 win over Newman in the second contest.
The Lions move to 3-0 on the young season with the pair of victories. A&M-Commerce is slated to play Washburn at 11 a.m. Sunday, followed immediately by a 1:30 p.m. game against No. 5 Southern Arkansas. Times are weather dependent, as precipitation chances in Southern Arkansas are increasing.
“I guess today’s lesson was how to deal with adversity,” said A&M-Commerce Head Softball Coach Richie Bruister. “We got down several times, and I was proud of our team and how they bounced back and played together. We pitched by committee, and Katie Dean got the win for us in the second game. Courtnee Jones pitched well in both games.”
“Ciera Nunez hasn’t been starting and got an opportunity. She delivered with the go-ahead run at the time and made some big defensive plays at third. ”
A&M-COMMERCE 6, WASHBURN 2
– Mariah Jameyson and Monica Cherry each picked up a pair of hits.
– Jameyson and Baylea Higgs each had two RBIs in the contest.
– Jones (1-0) earned the win in 3.0 innings of relief, while Selena Rima earned a save. Starter Dean struck out three batters in a 2.0 inning no decision. Rima struck out two batters in two hitless frames.
– The Lions stole eight bases in the game.
The Lady Blues of Washburn got on the board in the top of the first inning on a two-out RBI single. Jameyson tied the game with a RBI double in the bottom of the inning and later scored on an error to give the Lions a 2-1 advantage after the first inning.
Jameyson drew a leadoff walk in the third inning and stole second. She would score on Chealsea Slider’s RBI single to make it a 3-1 game. Washburn cut the lead to a single run in the top of the sixth before the Lions put the finishing touches on the win.
Higgs’ two-run single and Jameyson’s RBI single up the middle plated three runs to provide a cushion leading into the final inning, where Rima allowed a leadoff walk before retiring the next three batters to close out the win.
A&M-COMMERCE 7, NEWMAN 4
– Vanessa Avina scored three runs in a back and forth affair.
– Higgs and Jameyson each had two hits in this game as well, while Nunez and Jameyson each had two RBIs.
– Dean picked up the win, closing out the final two innings with one run on three hits with three strikeouts and a pair of walks.
The Jets drew first blood on a two-out RBI single in the top of the second inning. The Lions tied the game up in the bottom of the fourth after Avina reached on an error to lead off the inning. She scored when she and Tyler Oppenheim executed a double steal from first and third.
Newman regained the lead at 2-1 with an unearned error in the top of the fifth. The Lions had gone 18.2 innings to start the season without an error.
A&M-Commerce went back on top in the bottom of the fifth. The Lions’ speed forced a pair of Jet errors, which were paid for with the tying and go-ahead run when Nunez ripped a two-run, two-out single to centerfield to make it a 3-2 Lion lead.
Newman’s Adrienne Esposito hit a two-run single with two outs in the sixth to put the Jets back up 4-3.
Cherry led off the bottom of the inning with a walk to start the comeback rally. Higgs singled, and Jameyson followed that up with a two-run single to take the lead back for good. Avina and Slider registered RBIs as well to add insurance to the Lion lead.
The Jets attempted to come back with a single and a walk, but a fielders’ choice groundout and a pair of strikeouts gave the Lions their third win of the year.
Lions split in last day at SAU Invitational
MAGNOLIA, Ark. – The Texas A&M University-Commerce softball team split two games Sunday to finish the Southern Arkansas Invitational.
The Lions earned an 8-3 victory over Washburn before dropping a wild 15-14 game to No. 5 Southern Arkansas.
A&M-Commerce finishes its weekend in Magnolia with a 4-1 record. The Lions are next in action in Clearwater, Fla., on Friday through Sunday at the NFCA Division II Leadoff Classic.
A&M-COMMERCE 8, WASHBURN 3
– The top and bottom of the batting order produced in great measure for the Lions, driving in seven of the eight runs.
– Kinsie Hebler went 2-for-5 with four RBIs with a three-run home run to left-center. She also earned a complete game win, allowing three runs on six hits, striking out five and walking two.
– Monica Cherry went 2-for-4 with three RBIs from the ninth spot in the order.
Washburn took the lead in the bottom of the first on a solo homer by Savannah Moore. The Lions’ speed forced a pair of errors in the top of the second, and they capitalized on Cherry’s two-run single to take a 2-1.
The Lady Blues went up 3-2 with a two-run homer in the third inning, and the Lions tied up the game in the top of the fourth when Mariah Jameyson was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded.
The Lions broke the game open in the fifth inning. Cherry brought home a run with a single, followed by a three-run homer by Hebler to put the Lions up 7-3.
A&M-Commerce added an insurance run in the seventh on Hebler’s RBI single.
No. 5 SOUTHERN ARKANSAS 15, A&M-COMMERCE 14
– Jameyson went 3-for-4 with four RBIs and three runs scored, including a two-run homer.
– December Rivers had two RBIs. Higgs had a pair of hits.
– The Lions drew seven walks in the game.
The Lady Muleriders took the lead in the bottom of the first on a homer and a RBI single.
With two outs in the top of the third, the Lions rallied for four runs to take the lead. December Rivers laced a two-out single, followed by a Chealsea Slider RBI double. Jordyn Sharp’s RBI single capped the half-inning with the Lions up 4-2.
SAU responded with a big inning in the bottom half of the frame. Aided by a three-run homer by Godoyo, the hosts scored six runs to go up by an 8-4 count.
The Lions had plenty of time to erase the deficit, though. The speedy Oppenheim set up a run by reaching on an error, stealing second, and racing to third on a wild pitch. She scored on Hebler’s sacrifice fly to cut the lead to 8-5.
After a Higgs double, Jameyson blasted a two-run homer to dead center, cutting the lead to 8-7.
The Lions loaded the bases in the fifth inning and tied the game when Precious Thompson scored on a wild pitch. Jameyson walked with the bases loaded to give A&M-Commerce a 9-8 lead.
SAU answered again in the bottom of the frame, scoring three runs on a double and a long single. Sharp cut down a runner at the plate with a rocket of a throw from right field to keep the Lions within two runs at 11-9.
A&M-Commerce came back with five runs in the sixth, starting with Cherry bringing home a run when she was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded. Hebler walked in the next plate appearance to tie the game at 11-all.
Jameyson brought home the go-ahead run with a single, and the Lions scored the next two runs on a wild pitch and a passed ball, going up 14-11. SAU drew a bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the sixth to cut the lead to 14-12.
The Lions went down in order in the top of the seventh, and SAU was able to score three runs to take the final game of the tournament.
Director of Athletic Communications | Texas A&M University-Commerce