Men’s basketball falls in championship game against Troy

Men’s basketball falls in championship game against Troy

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Ojai Black, junior guard, dribbles the basketball during the game against Arkansas State University.
Photo by: Lauren Hancock | Staff Photographer

The men’s basketball team fell 59-53 in the Sun Belt Conference Championship game against Troy on Sunday.

The Bobcats fall to 20-13 in the season, but have accepted a bid to play in the Collegeinsider.com Tournament. The team will host a first-round game against Lamar on March 16 at Strahan Coliseum.

Despite falling short of making it to the NCAA Tournament, the Bobcats ended the conference tournament strong.

In the preseason polls the Bobcats were set to finish in last place of the conference, and instead made their way to the championship game.

The Bobcats had a 41.7 percentage from the field goal and 87.5 percentage from the free throw line.

Both teams started off slow offensively, but the Bobcats made the first effort with senior forward Kavin Gilder-Tilbury scoring a layup.

Freshman forward Nedeljko Prijovic then hit a three-pointer to give Texas State the lead in the first half. After the scoring from Prijovic, Troy went on an 8-0 run and kept the lead for the remainder of the half.

The Trojans lead going into the second half, but senior guard Bobby Conley knocked down a three-pointer to tie the game 33-33.

Once the game was tied, the Bobcats stayed right on top of Troy.

There was a four-point gain from Gilder-Tilbury, and a layup and foul for senior guard Ojai Black that made the score 51-50.

The Bobcats were unsuccessful in stopping the Trojans in the last minutes, and were runner-up in the tournament.

Gilder-Tilbury lead with 19 points, and 17 of which came in the second half alone. Junior forward Immanuel King also had a big game scoring 11 points on 5-of-7 shooting. King also had a team-high of eight rebounds and tied his career-high with five blocks.

King and Gilder-Tilbury were named to the SBC All-Tournament team.

The Bobcats will host Lamar on March 16 in the Collegeinsider.com Tournament with the time soon to come.

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