Basketball opens Lonestar Conference against Tarleton

Makayla Scheck

Brandon Neel, senior, taking the ball up the court. Nov. 30, 2017. Photo by Elias Maki.

Brandon Neel, senior, taking the ball up the court. Nov. 30, 2017. Photo by Elias Maki.

The basketball regular season officially started on Nov. 30 when the men’s and women’s basketball teams faced Tarleton. The women’s team came out on top but the men’s basketball team fell to the rival Tarleton University. The women’s team played first at 5:30 p.m. and end with a score of  66-56. The men’s team followed at 7:30 p.m. with a score of 59-73.

The women’s team led the first half of the game 31-24. The first quarter started off with a basket by Chelcie Kizart, guard and pre-physical therapy junior. At the 1:00 mark the score was 12-15. Chelsea Adams, forward and criminal justice junior, made the one foul shot she was given and the score was 13-15. With 0:08 left to the quarter, Jasmine Richardson, guard and exercise physiology senior, made a shot to make the score 16-15. The second quarter made a dramatic distance between the two teams. The score at half-time was 31-24, with a three-point shot by Courtney Kerr, guard and exercise physiology sophomore, with :58 seconds left. At the 9:11 mark Kristin Rydell, guard and nursing senior, made both foul shots given to her and brought the score to 18-16. Mica Schnieder, guard and mass communications sophomore, made a three-point shot and a regular basket during the second quarter. The score at half-time was 31-24 in favor of the women’s basketball team.

“The teamwork was amazing. I think we played really well as a team and the communication was great,” Micheline Mercelita, forward and kinesiology senior said.

The first half of the men’s game was not as calm as the women’s. In the first three minutes the score was 0-4, at the 16:43 mark Devante Pullum, guard and business senior, made a three-point shot to bring the score to 3-4. The men’s team was trailing behind Tarleton until the 7:30 mark. Wanaah Bail, forward and undecided junior, dunked the ball to bring the score to 16-17. At the 6:41 mark Pullum drove down the court and scored bringing the team ahead of Tarleton with 18-17. With five minutes left, Pullum passed the ball to Brandon Neel, senior guard, and Neel dunked it. Neel then made a foul shot and made the score 23-20. Tarleton was able to catch up and the score at half-time was 27-30.

“I’m really hoping to turn the program around because I have one more year in the season,” Adams said. “Our defense needs to talk more and go off of each other.”

The third quarter of the women’s game Richardson made a basket and the score was 33-26. The women’s team continued to stay ahead of Tarleton throughout the quarter. At the 5:14 mark Kizart brought the score to 45-35 with a basket. The score at the end of the quarter was 48-36. The team did not their their lead stop them, they continued to push for more points. Whitney Taylor, forward and education senior, started the fourth quarter off with a basket making the score 50-38. She then continued to make two more shots following. She increased the score by six points within the first two minutes. At the 5:14 mark Schnieder made a basket and bumped the score to 58-47. With 2:48 left, Taylor made a basket and then followed with one out of two foul shots. Then at the 1:12 mark Richardson rounded the score to 66-52. The final score of the game was 66-56 and the women’s basketball team beat Tarleton.

“We had some games where we could have done better but we are progressing, and I am really proud of my team,” Kizart said.

The second half of the men’s basketball team was rough. It took four minutes to get the first basket by Nemanja Krtolica, forward and business junior. Not long after at the 15:14 mark Charles Callier, redshirt freshman guard, made a basket and the score was 32-40. Pullum ran down the court to make a basket at the 11:05 mark, he then made another one not far after to make the score 40-49. The team tried their hardest to stay within the reach of Tarleton, but Tarleton kept fighting back. Although the score was not in favor of the men’s team, they did not give up fighting. With 8:02 left, Neel made a basket and brought the score to 42-53. Nick Powell, forward and undecided senior, made a shot with five minutes left. Pullum made a three-point shot and Josh Huntley, forward and business senior, made a regular basket. The score was 54-67 when Logan Hicks, sophomore guard, made a basket and a foul shot. Powell gave the final score when he made a basket at the 0:55 mark, the final score was 59-73.

“I do not think we had any strengths today, but I did think we had a lot of weaknesses. I thought we played tight early on, but maybe we were nervous. The guys who usually make shots missed, but I did think we did well guarding them at the beginning,” Nelson Haggerty men’s head coach said.

Both teams will play on Saturday in D. L. Ligon Coliseum. The women’s basketball team will face Texas A&M Commerce at 2 p.m. and the men’s basketball team will face them at 4 p.m.

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