Texans Lose Sloppy Game to GCU Despite Strong Start

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STEPHENVILLE – It was all Tarleton to start Saturday’s game against Grand Canyon, but turnovers decimated the Texans in their 47-37 loss.

Tarleton dropped the conference matchup at Wisdom Gym to fall to 10-6 (2-3 WAC). GCU improved to 11-5 (4-1 WAC).

This was a sloppy affair throughout, with 57 combined turnovers and 34 combined fouls. GCU entered the game first in the WAC in steals and second in turnovers forced, and they lived up to the billing, forcing 33 Tarleton turnovers, recording 16 steals. The 33 turnovers are Tarleton’s most in a game in at least the last 15 years.

Still, the Lopes only scored 19 points off of those turnovers. The Texans couldn’t find their stroke though, making 11-of-38 (.289) from the field, their lowest shooting percentage since the season opener at Arkansas. The Lopes were hardly better, making 18-of-53 (.340). Both teams combined to shoot 3-of-27 (.111) from long range.

The Texans had it clicking on both ends of the floor to start, scoring the first six points and not allowing a GCU score until more than halfway through the opening frame. The Lopes got just their second bucket right before the frame ended as Tarleton led 15-4 after the first 10 minutes. Tarleton made 6-of-11 (.545) in the first quarter to GCU’s 2-of-12 (.167) clip.

Tarleton made just five field goals combined over the next three quarters, shooting 5-of-29 (.172), including 1-of-12 (.083) in the second quarter. The Texans had a 15-point lead, 19-4, with under eight minutes remaining. Neither team scored over the next four minutes, and then GCU made their push. They ended the quarter on a 10-2 run to head to the break trailing 21-14.

The third quarter was all GCU, who won it 19-6. Tarleton led 23-16 before relenting a 14-0 run, giving the Lopes a seven-point lead at 30-23. GCU never trailed from there, going up by as many as 13 points. Tarleton tried to make up the difference at the end of the game, getting within five with under three minutes remaining, but it wasn’t meant to be.

Iyana Dorsey led the team in scoring for the sixth time this season with 13 points (8-8 FT). She also recorded a tied-career-high five steals. Malaya Kendrick neared a double-double once again with eight points and nine rebounds. Seynabou Thiam had four rebounds and four blocks. She’s swatted 12 shots over her last two games.

No Antelope scored in double figures, with three leading at eight apiece; Tiarra Brown, Amara Graham and Naudia Evans. Jay McChristine had nine rebounds off the bench.

Tarleton will get an opportunity to get over this one quickly. They play at Sam Houston on Monday at 2 p.m. CT, a make-up game from a previously postponed contest due to COVID-19 protocols in the Bearkats’ program.

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