STEPHENVILLE – Led by Josh Hawley’s game-high 23 points, Tarleton men’s basketball was able to bounce back with an 83-71 win over Texas A&M International on Saturday in Wisdom Gym.
The Texans improve to 6-7 overall and 2-5 in the Lone Star Conference while the Dustdevils fall to 2-11 and 0-7 in league play.
Tarleton shot 50 percent on the game, including 58 percent in the first half when they built the commanding lead. Hawley had one of his best shooting performances of the season, connecting on nine of his first 10 shots and finishing 9-11 for the game. The Texans also tied a season-high with 11 3-pointers, the second time this season they’ve hit double-digit 3’s. Isaiah Boling and Hawley led the Texans with three 3-pointers each.
After only a six-point lead in the first eight minutes of play, the Texan offense found its groove with 12 straight points for a 34-16 advantage. Boling’s 3-pointer with five minutes in the half put the Texans up by 20, their largest lead of the first half. The Texans went to the break up by 18, leading 49-31.
The Texans opened the second half on a 13-4 run to build their largest lead of the game at 62-35 as Hawley’s second-chance layup put the Texans up by 27. Tarleton had a season-best 14 offensive rebounds, which led to 20 second-chance points in the win. A&M International outscored the Texans 40-34 in the second half, but the Texans still led by at least 10 points the rest of the way.
Photos by DAVID SWEARINGEN
Defensively, the Texans were locked in as they out-rebounded the Dustdevils 36-25 and added a season-high 11 steals and seven blocks. Clashon Gaffney recorded his second career double-double with 13 points and a career-high 13 rebounds while coming up with four blocks and three steals in 25 minutes off the bench. Hawley added three blocks and two steals.
Isaiah Range recorded his fourth straight double-digit scoring game with 13 points and two steals. Zach Naylor added eight points and Devin Bethely posted seven points and six assists while Randall Broddie scored six points giving the starting five 57 of the 83 points.
The Texan bench accounted for 26 points, led by Gaffney’s 13. Isaiah Boling added nine points and Javontae Hopkins and Dexter Johnson each scored two points.
Tarleton will travel to Oklahoma City to take on Oklahoma Christian on Thursday, Jan. 9 at 7:30 p.m.