STEPHENVILLE – Tarleton men’s basketball fell on the road in the final regular season game to Texas A&M-Kingsville, 82-74, on Saturday at the Steinke Center.
The Texans posted a 17-11 record overall and 13-9 in the Lone Star Conference in the regular season. The Texans have qualified for the LSC Tournament for a record 19th straight season but will have to play in the play-in game on Tuesday, March 3 at 7 p.m. which will take place in Wisdom Gym. Admission is free for all fans. The opponent and bracket will be finalized later this afternoon. The winner of the play-in game on Tuesday advances to the 8-team LSC Tournament at the Comerica Center in Frisco on March 5-8.
Josh Hawley led the Texans with a game-high 25 points and seven rebounds. Clashon Gaffney followed with 18 points and seven boards while Randall Broddie posted 15 points to give the Texans three players in double figures.
Tarleton opened the game on a 10-2 run behind a pair of 3-pointers from Hawley and Devin Bethelyl for its largest lead of the day. The Texans would hold onto the lead until the Javelinas went up 22-21 with nine minutes left in the game and the Texans never got back in front again. A&M-Kingsville led by as much as eight in the first half as the Texans trailed 40-36 at halftime.
The Javelinas converted on 12 3-pointers compared to just seven for the Texans, with just three in the second half. A&M-Kingsville’s bench outscored the Texans 43-7.
In the second half, the Texans trailed by three before the Javelinas went on a 12-2 run for a double-digit lead at 63-50 with 10 minutes to go. The lead grew to as much as 15 in the second half in the final five minutes.
Tarleton made a late push in the final three minutes when they trailed 77-63, the Texans went on a 9-0 run to cut the deficit to five with Hawley posting six of the points. The Javelinas countered with a 5-0 run to go back up by 10 and close out the game.
Stay tuned to TarletonSports.com for information regarding the Lone Star Conference Tournament, which will take place March 5-8 at the Comerica Center in Frisco.