WT Men's Basketball Falls to Tarleton 89-70
ALLEN, Texas – The Buffaloes of West Texas A&M ended their rollercoaster 2013-14 season on Wednesday night in the Lone Star Conference Tournament Quarterfinals as the #5 Texans of Tarleton State outlasted WT, 89-70 at the Allen Event Center in Allen, Texas. The Buffs end their season with an overall record of 10-17 while the Texans advance to the LSC Semifinals with an overall mark of 25-2.
The Buffs started out the scoring on their first possession as Tez Dumars followed his own miss with an offensive board and layup for the first bucket of the game, Tarleton tied the game followed by both teams trading misses during their next few trips down the court before traded buckets tied the game at 4-4. Dumars connected on a three from the wing before TSU answered with a three of their own, Antjuan Ball connected on a layup followed by a Texans bucket headed to the first media timeout with the teams tied at 9-9 with 14:40 left.
Keon Pledger drove the lane and finished on a floater as the Texans were called for the goal-tending followed by misses on both ends of the court before TSU knocked down one-of-two from the free throw line but Coleman Furst grabbed an offensive board and registered the putback for the 12-11 lead. Miles Gatewood nailed the long range three from the wing followed by a Ball defensive rebound that led to a TSU foul as the teams headed into the media timeout with the Buffs leading 14-12 with 11:43 left.
Dumars nailed a pair of free throws following the break before the Texans hit two straight buckets to tie the game at 16-16 to force a WT timeout with 10:52 left, the Buffs missed again that led to a De’Andre Upchurch three from the top of the key, Ball answered with a bucket but Upchurch struck again with another long ball to make it 22-18. Ball hit one-of-two from the charity stripe followed by two Texan free throws before Ball registered another layup that was answered by a TSU layup, Tarleton registered a steal and score with the fast break layup that was answered by a David Gibbs three and a WT foul to head into the under-eight minute media timeout with TSU leading 28-24 with 6:55 left.
Tarleton nailed a pair from the free throw line after the break followed by a WT turnover that led to a TSU jumper in the paint, Drimir Ferguson registered his first points with a layup followed by a WT miss but the Buffs gave the ball back with an offensive foul with 5:48 left. TSU missed on their next trip that led to a Gatewood three from the wing before Tarleton stole the ball at midcourt and finished a three point play for the 35-29 lead to head into the final media timeout of the half with 3:56 left.
Pledger hit one-of-two from the free throw line before TSU hit a three from the top of the key followed by a pair of David Duncan free throws to make it 38-32, the LSC Player of the Year Chuck Guy answered with a three from the top of the key followed by a WT turnover that led to a TSU layup with 2:20 left. Duncan grabbed an offensive board with the putback followed by a TSU turnover, the Buffs turned the ball over on their end of the court as Guy nailed a pair of free throws to make it 45-34 with 1:19 left to force a WT timeout.
Ferguson drove the lane and was fouled as he hit two freebies before Guy hit one-of-two from the charity stripe with 1:02 left, WT turned the ball over once again as Tarleton hit one-of-two from the line followed by a TSU foul as Duncan hit one-of-two to make it 47-37. The Texans held the ball for the final shot as Guy drove the lane and was fouled by Duncan, the senior guard hit both from the charity stripe with 6.8 seconds left as the Buffs missed a jumper at the buzzer to send the teams into the locker room with TSU leading 49-37.
The Buffs were led at the half by Dumars with nine points followed by Ball with six points to go along with four rebounds while Gatewood scored six points in the opening half. West Texas A&M went 12-of-29 from the floor including 4-of-11 from deep and 9-of-12 from the free throw line to shoot 41.1% with 19 rebounds, six assists and seven turnovers to go along with no blocks and no steals in the opening half.
Tarleton State was led at the break by Tashawn Mabry with 12 points followed by De’Andre Upchurch with 11 and Chuck Guy with 10 to go along with four assists. The Texans went 15-of-26 from the floor including 5-of-8 from deep and 14-of-18 from the charity stripe to shoot 57.7% with 13 rebounds and six assists and just two turnovers to go along with three blocks and four steals.
Pledger nailed a pair of free throws to start out the second half before TSU answered with a Furst three from the corner before Ball hit one-of-two from the line to make it 52-40, TSU turned the ball over which led to a Pledger pull-up jumper while Tarleton missed their next shot that led to a pair of Texan fouls but the Buffs turned the ball over as Upchurch nailed a three to make it 55-42 with 16:24 left. The Buffs committed an offensive foul that led to another Upchurch long ball before a pair of misses and a Tarleton foul took the teams into the first media timeout of the half with TSU leading 58-42 with 15:35 left.
The Buffs continued to struggle from the floor after the break as Guy found Mabry inside for the layup followed by another WT turnover that the Texans couldn’t convert as they missed a three from the top of the key that led to Ball hitting two free throws to make it 60-44 with 13:55 left. Dumars hit a pair from the free throw line followed by the teams trading misses before TSU’s John Cathey-Macklin grabbed an offensive board and registered the putback before Ball answered with a bucket of his own to head into the media timeout with the Texans leading 62-48 with 11:55 left.
Tarleton used the backdoor layup to run their lead to 64-48 after the break before a pair of turnovers led to a TSU foul as Duncan missed the one-and-one followed by a Devone Carter offensive board and putback, Guy nailed a pair of free throws followed by a Prince Williams fast break layup to make it 68-50. TSU responded with a layup before Pledger connected on the layup to go along with a TSU foul to force a Texans timeout with 9:22 left. Pledger completed the three point play but TSU answered with a three point play of their own by Mabry with 8:52 left before a TSU block led to a pair of freebies, Ferguson nailed a pair of free throws to force a WT timeout with 8:13 left as Tarleton led 75-55.
The teams traded buckets after a media timeout before a pair of Pledger free throws followed by a Tarleton layup, Williams connected again underneath for the Buffs before TSU answered with a Mabry long ball to make it 82-61 with 4:14 left. Pledger nailed a three from the wing for the wing after the final media timeout before a TSU layup made it 84-64, a TSU miss was answered by a Tarleton block as TSU connected on another bucket before a Pledger layup forced a Tarleton timeout with 2:12 left. A TSU miss led to a Dumars floater in the lane before a Tarleton three point play by Upchurch was followed by Duncan missing a pair from the charity stripe, a missed TSU three from the wing was followed by a WT turnover as TSU fouled with 4.3 seconds left as Dumars hit two free throws in the 89-70 defeat.
The Buffs were led offensively by Pledger with 17 points followed by Dumars with 15 and Ball with 12 to go along with eight rebounds. West Texas A&M went 20-of-54 from the floor including 5-of-17 from deep and 25-of-32 from the free throw line to shoot 37% with 38 rebounds, 10 assists and 14 turnovers to go along with no blocks and four steals on the night.
The Texans saw three players score in double-digits as Mabry had 24 points followed by Upchurch with 22 and Guy with 16 to go along with seven assists in the win. Tarleton State went 29-of-55 from the floor including 9-of-21 from deep and 22-of-27 from the charity stripe to shoot 52.7% on the night with 30 rebounds, 13 assists and eight turnovers to go along with seven blocks and eight steals.
The Buffs end their season with a 10-17 overall record as they finished the Lone Star Conference schedule with a 2-12 mark to finish in eight place in league play, the loss to Tarleton State marks the third straight season that TSU has ended the Buffs’ season