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Men’s basketball heads to UT-Arlington

SUBMITTED REPORT

Texas State University men’s basketball team will look for their first win in six games when the Bobcats travel to Arlington, Texas and play their second game this season against the University of Texas at Arlington. The game tips off at 4 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 31.

Bobcat fans can listen to the game in San Marcos on KTSW (FM 89.9) with Bill Culhane calling the play-by-play and Dalton Sweat serving as an analyst.

Texas State enters the game with an 8-11 overall record and a 1-5 Southland Conference mark after suffering their fifth straight loss with an 86-76 setback at UTSA last Wednesday night. The Bobcats also suffered a 71-65 loss against Lamar and a 79-75 loss against Sam Houston State in San Marcos. In addition, Texas State dropped a 77-72 decision at Central Arkansas on Jan. 17 and an 89-64 loss at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi on Jan. 14.

UT Arlington enters Saturday’s game with a 10-8 overall record and a 3-2 mark in Southland Conference game following the Mavericks’ 78-74 loss at Sam Houston State on Jan. 24. The loss snapped UTA’s three-game winning streak after UT Arlington beat Lamar 94-83 on Jan. 14, UTSA 100-97 in double overtime at UTSA on Jan. 17 and a 67-52 win against Stephen F. Austin on Jan. 21.

THE SERIES

This marks the 49th meeting between Texas State and UT Arlington and the Bobcats have a 27-21 series record against the Mavericks. Texas State enters the game having won the last two games played between the two teams in San Marcos. Earlier this season, the Bobcats won 87-76 on Jan. 10.

Last season, Texas State ended the regular season with a 93-84 victory before the Mavericks rebounded to win the Southland Conference Tournament and earn an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.

The Bobcats will be looking for their first win at UTA since winning 66-62 on Mar. 2, 2005.

Texas State-UTA Earlier This Year

Texas State’s lone Southland Conference win came on Jan. 10 when the Bobcats defeated UTA 87-76 in San Marcos. Brent Benson scored 21 points, while Brandon Bush and Em¬manuel Bidias A’ Moute combined for 35 points, 18 rebounds and five blocked shots to lead Texas State to an 87-76 victory over UT Arlington in San Marcos.

Bush scored 19 points and grabbed eight rebounds for the Bobcats, while Bidias A’ Moute registered his first double-double as a Bobcat with 16 points and a game-high 10 rebounds.

He also blocked a career-high four shots and added three assists and a steal to help the Bobcats win their fifth straight home game.

The Bobcats scored the first four points of the game as sopho¬more center Ty Gough hit a jumper in the lane and passed the ball to Bush for a slam dunk after he stole the ball from UTA’s Marquez Haynes.

With the game tied at 8-8, UTA went on a 5-0 run to take a 13-8 lead on Roge’r Guignard’s three-point field goal. But, Texas State came right back with a 14-6 run of its own to take a 22-19 lead with 11:19 left to play in the first half.

The two teams fought back and forth before John Rybak broke a 37-37 tie with a three point shot from the right wing to give Texas State a 40-37 lead with 2:35 left in the opening half. Texas State never trailed again as Bush added a jumper and Benson made two free throws to give the Bobcats a 44-41 lead at halftime.

UTA made one last run in the first five minutes of the second half when Trey Parker hit a slam dunk to tie the score at 50-50 with 15:36 left.
Texas State answered again as the Bobcats used a 20-8 run during the next eight minutes to open up a 70-58 lead with 7:21 left to play. Bush and Bidias A’ Moute scored six points each to lead Texas State’s rally.

The Bobcats never looked back and extended its lead to 16 (78-62) with 4:06 left to play. UTA couldn’t get closer than 12 until 39 seconds remained and Haynes made two free throws to make the score 85-74.

After Benson made a pair of free throws, Anthony Vereen hit a lay-up off an offensive rebound to make the final score 87-76.

Gough and Corey Jefferson finished with six points each, while Jefferson handed out seven assists. Rybak, Cameron Johnson, Jona¬than Sloan and Ryan White also added four points each and Dylan Moseley scored three points on a trey in the second period.

Haynes led UTA with 23 points, while Vereen added 16 points and Guignard finished with 12 points.
Texas State held UTA to 41 percent shooting from the field, including 27.8 percent beyond the three-point line, marking the third time in the last four games that the Bobcats have held

SCOUTING TEXAS STATE

Texas State enters Saturday’s game at UTA looking to win its first road game of the season after dropping their first seven road contests this season, including three Southland Conference road games at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, Central Arkansas and UTSA.

After suffering a four-point loss (79-75) against Sam Houston State and a six-point loss against Lamar (71-65), Texas State enters the UTSA game having eight of their 11 losses being decided by a combined total of 34 points. In addition to those two games, the Bobcats suffered a 77-72 setback at Central Arkansas, an 85-81 loss against New Orleans, an 81-73 loss at No. 6-ranked Texas, a 100-94 loss at Rice and a 97-96 loss at Wyoming.

SCOUTING UTA

UT Arlington enters Saturday’s game looking to win its sixth home game this season after opening the season with a 5-0 record in the Texas Hall. The Mavericks feature four of the Top 20 scoring leaders in the Southland Conference.

Anthony Vereen is third with 16.7 points per game, while Marquez Haynes ranks fourth with 16.4 points. Brandon Long ranks 11th among the league leaders with 14.5 points per game, and Roge’r Guignard is tied for 20th with 12.3 points per contest.

LAST TIME OUT

Despite season-best performance by Brandon Bush, Texas State could not overcome UTSA’s late first half rally as the Bobcats suffered an 86-76 loss last Wednesday night in the Convocation Center on the UTSA campus.

Bush scored a game-high 25 points to better his previous season-best of 21 points at Wyoming and Bowman added 11 points in his third start of the season, but the Roadrunners had six players score in double figures and grab at least five rebounds to offset those efforts.

Bush scored seven of his points in the first eight minutes of the game and Corey Jefferson, who finished with seven points, nailed a pair of three-point field goals to lead the Bobcats to a 21-14 lead with 11:38 left in the first half.

That’s when UTSA seized control of the game as the Roadrunners finished the half with 33-14 run to take a 47-35 lead at halftime. During that stretch, Texas State missed nine of their 13 shots and committed six turnovers.

After UTSA opened the second half outscoring Texas State 8-2 to extend its lead to 55-49 with 16:02 left to play, the Bobcats began a 15-10 rally when Ty Gough made a pair of free throws and a lay-up to pull Texas State to make the score 57-43. Then, Bush scored three consecutive lay-ups to pull the Bobcats to within 61-49.

Bowman and Bush made consecutive lay-ups to pull Texas State to within 61-53 with 11:25 left to play in the game. That was as close as Texas State could get as UTSA finished the game out-scoring the Bobcats 21-19.

Travis Gabbidon led UTSA with 18 points, while Josh Bonney netted 17, Omar Johnson and Chris Allen each scored 12 points and Joey Shack and Morris Smith combined for 10 points each.
Rick Poulter

— FROM TEXAS STATE SPORTS INFORMATION/RICK POULTER