The men’s basketball team traveled to Midwestern State in hopes stealing a win on the road, but could not finish off a furious comeback, and lost 60-55.
The first half was a defensive battle, as both teams shot below 35% from the field. The ‘Cats went into the locker room down only five points on the road 30-25.
“I thought we played really well defensively,” head coach Joe Golding said. “I think they shot 37% for the game or something so way down on their average, so defensively we played really well.”
The second half started with a bang for the Mustangs, who raced ahead and left ACU down by as many as 17 points with nine minutes left to play.
That is when the Wildcat defense clamped down and the men in purple and white started knocking down some shots, sparking a run.
“In the second half we pressed them a little bit and sped up the game, and got some easy buckets and some open looks,” Golding said. “We just don’t have the depth to press like that the entire game, so that makes it a little tough.”
ACU chipped away at the Midwestern State lead until an Eric Lawton three-pointer knotted the game up at 55-55 with only two minutes to play.
Unfortunately, another close game slipped away from the Wildcats in the final minutes of play, and leaving ACU at 5-10 in the Lone Star Conference.
Lawton finished with a game high 17 points. Elliott Lloyd had 13 points, and his first half shooting kept ACU within striking distance. Freshman Parker Wentz also had 10 points off the bench, and Dosh Simms grabbed 12 rebounds.
“Elliott shot the ball really well in the first half,” Golding said. “It is tough to finish on those guys because they are big and very long. We had some looks but we couldn’t finish in the first half. In the second half Parker hit some threes and we got more open looks.”
Despite the loss, the Wildcats still have a chance to make the LSC tournament with a good finish. The ‘Cats have three games remaining, starting with a road trip to Cameron University Saturday afternoon.
“We have to find a way, that is the only mindset to have,” assistant coach Brian Burton said. “These guys are playing hard and giving everything they have. We have to create some good favor so that we can get some breaks and get to Allen for the tournament.”