SHERMAN, Texas –After shooting nearly 56% from three in the first half, the Austin College men's basketball team made just 2-of-17 from deep after halftime and Johnson & Wales took advantage on their way to handing the 'Roos a 92-81 loss on Friday night in Hughey Gym. The 'Roos are now 7-15 overall and 3-10 in Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference play.
Austin College fell behind 18-6 early on in the game but a 14-5 run capped off by a triple from Derek Lockman pulled the 'Roos to within three at 23-20 with 9:29 left before the break. After JWU answered with a three to go back ahead by six, Austin College responded with a 12-0 run that included threes from Lockman and Luke Brumbaugh as the 'Roos took a 32-26 lead with 7:11 on the clock.
The 'Roos went on top 43-33 on a bucket by Michael Holland with 1:40 left before halftime, and after Johnson & Wales scored six in a row to cut it to a four-point game, Kam Hogan buried a three just before the buzzer to give Austin College a 46-39 lead. Lockman knocked down 3-of-6 from deep, scoring 11 points in the opening half.
Austin College maintained its lead early on in the second half, and Justice Mercadel's basket with 18:44 left made it a 50-43 game. However, the Wildcats countered with a 15-0 run to take a 58-50 lead just over five minutes later. Two free throws from Kameron Hill pulled the 'Roos to within six at 60-54, but eight straight points for JWU pushed the deficit to 68-54 with 8:23 left in the game.
Johnson & Wales maintained a double-digit lead for most of the next seven minutes, but after getting fouled on a three, Lockman made all three free throws and Chanston Goodman stole the ensuing inbounds pass and scored, quickly cutting it to an 83-78 game with 1:05 to play. Lockman knocked down another three with 58 seconds left to make it 84-81, but those would be the last points of the game for the "Roos as JWU added eight free throws down the stretch to make it a 92-81 final.
Mercadel scored 21 points on 8-of-15 shooting and added six rebounds, three assists, and two steals, and Lockman came off the bench to score 20 in the loss. Holland added 16 points and five boards.
Jontrell Herman led all scorers with 35 points for Johnson & Wales, adding seven rebounds and six assists. King Grant-Perry scored 15 points and grabbed 10 rebounds, and Andrew Romero III scored 14 points with 11 boards.
Austin College closes out the home portion of its schedule tomorrow night, playing host to Colorado College at 7:30 p.m. Tip-off will follow Senior Night recognition, which will take place between the women's and men's games.