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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

Men’s basketball defeats Cardinals in season opener

Texas+State+mens+basketball+Head+Coach+Terrence+Johnson+talks+to+players+during+a+time-out+made+by+St.+Marys+University%2C+Thursday%2C+Nov.+4%2C+2021%2C+at+Strahan+Arena.+The+Bobcats+won+52-43.

Texas State men’s basketball Head Coach Terrence Johnson talks to players during a time-out made by St. Mary’s University, Thursday, Nov. 4, 2021, at Strahan Arena. The Bobcats won 52-43.

Texas State’s men’s basketball held off a late rally from the University of the Incarnate Word Cardinals to win 75-57 in its opening game of the 2021-22 season on Tuesday, Nov. 9. 
The Bobcats entered their season strong, leading the scoreboard nearly the entire game. Senior guard Caleb Asberry earned the team 17 points in the first half. The offensive production from Asberry (20 PTS, 8-12 FGS, 3-5 3FGS, 1-2 FT) along with the team’s defense held UIW to 24 first half points.
Stellar half-court defense by Texas State, that forced turnovers by UIW, led to 15 Bobcat points in the first quarter. Team defense from Texas State out of a timeout led to a shot clock violation that sparked a 12-0 run making the score 23-9 with 10:02 left in the first quarter. This run quieted a rowdy Cardinals crowd early.
UIW’s sophomore guard Josh Morgan would make a layup to end the scoring drought for the Cardinals.
Coming out of a 30-second Bobcat timeout after freshman forward Brandon Love lost his shoe, Asberry drove through traffic in the middle of the lane and threw down a dunk on multiple UIM defenders.
Texas State shot 66.7% from the field and 55.6% from the three-point line in the first and scored 43. UIW shot 42.1% from the field and 22.2% from the three-point line in the first. The Bobcats forced 13 turnovers for the Cardinals in the first half, as opposed to just three for the Bobcats.
Asberry ignited the ‘Cats’ offense with 17 first half points, on 3-4 from the three-point line. Junior guard Drue Drinnon added eight points in the first half. A total of eight Bobcats scored in the first half and Morgan led all Cardinals scorers with nine points in the first.
The Bobcats would come out of the locker room strong to begin the second half and go on an 8-0 run after dunks by senior forward Isiah Small and senior forward Nighael Ceaser. The ‘Cats would take their largest lead of the game after a layup by Ceaser, assisted by Drinnon, put them up 53-24.
The Cardinals responded by going on a 9-0 after two threes by graduate guard Robert Glasper to cut the deficit to 42-59. With the UIW crowd back into the game, sophomore guard Davion Coleman made a tough layup to end the Bobcats scoring drought.
On the other end of the court, UIW graduate forward Johnny Hughes III made a putback dunk that sent the Cardinals crowd into a frenzy.
The Bobcats controlled most of the game until they had to hold off a delayed assemblage by the Cardinals. After a timeout to settle the team down with 7:55 left and the Bobcats up 61-44, Texas State Head Coach Terrence Johnson had the ‘Cats set up in a soft press before setting up his team’s half-court defense.
The Cardinals would cut the lead to 62-47 on a three-pointer by freshman center Benjamin Griscti which made the UIW faithful erupt.
On a backdoor cut to the basket by junior guard Drew Lutz, the Bobcats committed a shooting foul that would send Lutz to the free throw line with a chance to cut the lead to 13.
Lutz hit both and the Cardinals set up a 1-3-1 zone defense that the ‘Cats struggled against offensively, forcing Texas State to call a timeout.
With a chance to further cut into the Bobcats’ lead the Cardinals turned the ball over near midcourt which led to an uncontested layup for senior guard Mason Harrell, putting Texas State up 64-49.
The Cardinals had no quit in them and played tough defense for more than 20 seconds on a possession but senior guard Shelby Adams extended Texas State’s lead 67-53 with a turnaround jumper in the lane at the shot clock buzzer. This helped slow the last-minute run by the Cardinals down and put them away in the final minutes.
The Cardinals failed to capitalize on the Bobcats inability to score a single three-pointer in the second half. The Bobcats dominated points in the paint, outscoring UIW 44-16 for the game.
Texas State’s defense only allowed two Cardinals to score double figures in points, Morgan (16 PTS, 6-8 FGS, 2-2 3FG, 2-3 FT) and Hughes III (12 PTS, 4-6 FGS, 4-4 FT). Asberry led the way scoring for the ‘Cats. On his way to closing the Cardinals out, Adams was the second leading scorer for the ‘Cats (14 PTS, 6-8 FGS, 2-3 FT, 3 STLS).
The Bobcats, who were selected to finish third in the Sun Belt Conference Preseason Coaches’ Poll, ended up handling business against a pesky UIW team. 
This was the first of five consecutive road games to start the year off for the Bobcats. Texas State will now travel to face a tough Southeastern Conference opponent, Louisiana State University, at 7 p.m. on Nov. 12 at the Maravich Center. The game will stream on ESPN+.

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