Lion men hold off Javelinas for first LSC win
The Texas A&M University-Commerce Lions held off a hot-shooting Texas A&M University-Kingsville group in the game's final minute for a 68-66 win, its first in Lone Star Conference play this year, on Wednesday at The Field House.
The Lions (12-2, 1-1 LSC) hit 16 of its 20 foul shots in the second half, including nine of 10 in the final 2:09, to withstand an A&M-Kingsville team (5-8, 0-1 LSC) playing its first game since December 18. Still, you would never know the Javelinas had been off for three weeks as they tied a season-high with 10 three-point buckets, including three in the game's final two minutes to erase what was an eight-point Lion lead late in the game.
Devondrick Walker led the Lions with 16 points and four rebounds on the night, hitting a pair of triples and all four of his attempts from the foul line. Meanwhile, Tyrie Wooten finished with 14 points and three steals, doing the majority of his damage at the charity stripe where he went a perfect 10-for-10.
That duo combined for nearly half of the Lion's offensive output, and aside from a Kenny Brown free throw, were the only Lions to score in the final 11 minutes of the game.
Christian Macauley nearly picked up a double-double, going for 10 points with eight rebounds and four blocked shots, while LaDon Carnegie added 11 points and five rebounds in just 19 minutes of work.
Irvin Hollinger led the Javelinas, hitting four three-point buckets and going for 17 points, helping A&M-Kingsville to a 35-14 edge in bench scoring.
It looked as though the Lions were going to be able to salt the game away in the final minutes, owning a 61-53 lead after a pair of foul shots from Walker at the 2:09 mark. But the Javelinas hit threes on each of their next two possessions and had the Lion lead at 64-59 with just 30 seconds remaining before the Lions turned it right back over. A&M-Kingsville then immediately capitalized with another three from Hollinger with 23 seconds to play to make things interesting at 65-64.
But Wooten responded with a pair of foul shots and after a Rashad Basey putback on the other end, the Javelinas had no choice but to foul Kameron Price who made the first foul shot before intentionally missing the second with just 1.7 seconds remaining. The ball then bounced away and sealed the Lion win.
The Javelinas initially came out of the gate on fire, jumping out to a 17-10 lead in the game's opening minutes behind three early triples. But a Carnegie layup with under 11 minutes to play in the half sparked a 15-1 Lion run that saw them take a 25-18 lead, holding the Javelinas without a made field goal for more than five minutes of the half.
But A&M-Kingsville finished with a spurt of its own and got a jumper from Robert Powell at the buzzer to go into the locker room down by just a bucket, despite hitting five threes in the opening half.
The Lions will now head off on a three-game road swing that begins Sunday afternoon at Angelo State. They will take on the Rams in a 5:05 p.m. tip-off that will be televised live on Comcast Sports Net Houston.