Texas State moves to 3-0 in Southwestern Showdown

Quentin Scott dribbles around Jackson State players.

Kate Connors

Junior Quentin Scott dribbles around Jackson State players to get open and shoot a basket Nov. 18 at Strahan Arena.

Aidan Bea, Sports Reporter

Texas State prevailed in a back-and-forth effort over 2018 NCAA qualifier Abilene Christian University on Monday, moving to 3-0 in the Southwestern Showdown and 4-2 on the season.

After trailing 36-30 in the first half, the Bobcat defense held the team down to clinch the win and remain undefeated at home.

Four players landed double figures in scoring. Senior guard Nijal Pearson led the way with 16 points, while the sophomore class showed out with Mason Harrell, Alonzo Sule and Caleb Asberry scoring 10 points each.

Abilene Christian is coached by associate head coach Brett Tanner, who once worked under Kaspar for the Texas State program. Kaspar said that both teams had similar strategies due to Tanner’s experience.

“Their associate head coach was once my assistant coach, so he knows me,” Kaspar said. “They play similar defense (and) their offense has some very good components to it.”

The home victory came just after the ‘Cats’ first road win of the season in a 64-57 win against the favored UNLV Runnin’ Rebels.

Pearson continued his stellar play this season, pouring in 25 points and 10 rebounds. Pearson passed Donte Mathis in scoring, moving into third in all-time scoring for the Bobcats.

Kaspar said that Pearson’s most important skill isn’t his high scoring, but his ability to lead.

“I think his biggest asset, other than his offensive scoring ability, is his leadership,” Kaspar said. “He is a very vocal leader. He is a hard worker (and) he puts extra time in the gym. He’s got a pretty good basketball IQ. I think basketball IQ is vastly underrated when talking about what comprises a good basketball player.”

The Bobcats will be looking to close the Southwestern Showdown undefeated in the final game of the series at home against Hartford on Saturday.

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