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The University Star




The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

Texas State pulls away late for third win in a row

Texas+State+senior+guard+Nighael+Ceaser+%2822%29+goes+for+a+shot+underneath+the+basket+in+a+game+against+Coastal+Carolina%2C+Sat.+Feb+5%2C+2022%2C+at+Strahan+Arena.+The+Bobcats+won+69-64.

Texas State senior guard Nighael Ceaser (22) goes for a shot underneath the basket in a game against Coastal Carolina, Sat. Feb 5, 2022, at Strahan Arena. The Bobcats won 69-64.

Texas State men’s basketball (15-6 overall, 6-3 Sun Belt) put away the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers (12-10 overall, 4-6 Sun Belt) Saturday night 69-64, improving the Bobcats record at home to 10-1.
In the waning minutes, senior forward Isiah Small came up clutch with two huge buckets late, including the dagger three at the end of the shot clock with 33 seconds left in the game that put the ‘Cats up six.
Down the stretch, Small came up huge on his way to a game high of 15 points to go along with a team-high of nine rebounds.
The first half was back and forth as neither team could grab the lead at the end of it, resulting in a tie game, 29-29, after the first 20 minutes.
Both teams began the game on individual runs. The Chanticleers captured a 10-0 lead to begin the game as it looked like they would dominate the paint with the play of sophomore center Essam Mostafa, who finished with his 11th double-double of the season, 11 points and a game-high of 12 rebounds.
The Bobcats turned the game in their favor at the start of the second half, by getting open looks and creating ball movements that led to their first five field goals. During the run there was a great hesitation drive by senior guard Shelby Adams that freed senior forward Nighael Ceaser for a wide-open, uncontested dunk. The run was capped off by a transition layup by Small. 
But the Chanticleers did not stop as senior guard Rudi Williams kept them within striking distance. However, every time the ‘Cleers would get close, the Bobcats responded. After a series of threes by senior guard/forward Vince Cole, the Bobcats matched up, thanks to a step-back three by junior guard Drue Drinnon and a corner three by junior forward Tyrel Morgan.
A series of turnovers by the Bobcats led to a transition dunk by Coastal Carolina’s freshman guard Josh Uduje and a pair of free throws by Mustafa with just over two minutes left in the game. 
This was not the first time Texas State faced such a close game in the past week, as the Bobcats won their previous two games by only a combined seven points. However, the Bobcats’ stellar team defense shut the Sun Belt’s number one scoring offense down late and held them way below their season average of 74.8 points.
The Bobcats will now head to Louisiana for a two-game road trip. First, they will play the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns at 7 p.m. on Feb. 10 at the Cajundome in Lafayette, Louisiana. Before they come back home, they will face off against the Louisiana Monroe Warhawks at 2 p.m. on Feb. 12 at the Fant-Ewing Coliseum in Monroe, Louisiana. Both games with air on ESPN+. 

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