The Texas State men’s basketball team finished their Strahan finale Monday night with a 90-64 win over South Alabama.
The Bobcats improved their best winning season record to 17-11 and 10-6 in the Sun Belt Conference.
Senior night at Strahan started off with a lot of emotion and applause during pregame ceremonies, but that did not stop the Bobcats from taking care of business during the game.
The Texas State men’s basketball senior class consisted of Kavin Gilder-Tilbury, senior forward, Ojai Black, senior guard, Bobby Conley, senior guard, and Maljhum McCrea, senior forward.
Texas State started the game with a 10-0 run that lasted for about three minutes until the Jaguars finally answered with a layup.
The Bobcats stayed ahead the entire game, leading South Alabama by 17 points after a shot from Nijal Pearson, freshman guard, with 1:14 left in the half.
A three-pointer from Gilder-Tilbury sent the Bobcats into halftime with a 45-27 lead over the Jaguars.
For the first half, the Bobcats shot 60.7 percent from the field goal and 100 percent from the free throw line. The Jaguars were 44 percent from the field goal and 40 percent from the free throw line.
Coming from halftime, another three-pointer from Gilder-Tilbury opened the lead to 19 points with 19:08 left in the game.
Although South Alabama attempted to put up a fight, the Bobcats continued shooting and opened the gap to 27 points with 5:01 on the clock. Texas State was up 79-52.
Bobcat defense held strong only allowing the Jaguars to close the gap to 20 points with less than a minute in the game.
After a three-pointer from Nathan Josephs, sophomore guard, Nedeljko Prijovic, freshman forward, slam dunked the ball after stealing it from the opponent.
Another steal from Prijovic created the assist Deris Duncan, junior guard, needed to make a dunk for the team with .2 seconds left in the game. With the crowd and the bench going crazy, a technical foul was called on the Bobcats.
The Jaguars made the final free throw of the game making the final score 90-64.
Gilder-Tilbury finished the game with a double-double, 26 points and 11 rebounds. Gilder-Tilbury also tied his career high in points, and had his third double-double of the season.
Gilder-Tilbury was pleased with the outcome of his last home game, and hopes that the team can keep the momentum going into the rest of the season.
“I just wanted to go out with a bang,” Gilder-Tilbury said. “We just got to keep the momentum going, and it will show that anything is possible.”
Pearson finished with 15 points and three rebounds. Black ended the game with 14 points and five assists.
Defensively, Texas State had 36 rebounds and seven steals.
Overall the Bobcats shot 58.6 percent from the field goal and 92.9 percent from the free throw line. Texas State also had their highest win total since the 1998-99 season.
The Bobcats will finish their regular season with a Louisiana road-trip. Texas State will play Louisiana March 2 at 7:15 p.m. and UL-Monroe Mar 4 at 2:00 p.m.