SHERMAN, Texas – The Austin College men's basketball team battled back and forth with visiting Colorado College all game but the Tigers pulled away in the final minutes to hand the 'Roos a 71-64 loss on Friday night in Hughey Gym. The 'Roos are now 4-17 overall and 2-8 in Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference play.
Both teams struggled to find an offensive rhythm early, with the score knotted at six points apiece four minutes into the game. An Austin Wells three pointer gave the 'Roos a 12-11 edge with 11:10 remaining, and after the Tigers grabbed a 15-14 lead, Josh Hardwick's three with 8:38 left gave the 'Roos a 17-15 advantage. After the 'Roos took a 22-19 lead, the Tigers would respond with seven unanswered to go ahead 26-22, and Colorado College held a 28-25 lead heading into the locker room.
Kameron Hill knotted things up early in the second half with a three to make it 34 apiece, and Wells, Kam Hogan, and Hill again hit threes to put Austin College ahead 43-38 with 15:43 left in the game. Eric Houska scored eight in a row for Colorado College to put the Tigers on top 46-43, but the 'Roos wouldn't go away and a basket by Zachary Nickens gave Austin College a 49-48 edge midway through the second half.
The two teams traded baskets with Michael Holland scoring to give Austin College a 55-54 lead with six and a half minutes remaining, but six straight points for the Tigers made it a 60-55 game with 4:05 on the clock.
The lead grew to eight before Austin College managed to trim it to a 65-61 deficit on a pair of free throws by Justice Mercadel with 1:58 left, and a three-point-play by Mercadel got the 'Roos to within three at 67-64 with 51 seconds remaining. However, that's as close as things would get and the Tigers would add four late free throws to ice the game
Hogan and Mercadel each scored 14 to pace Austin College, with Hogan adding five assists and two steals while Mercadel grabbed five boards and came away with two steals of his own. Hill finished with 13 points as the only other 'Roo to reach double-digits.
Cooxooeii Black led all scorers with 23 points and pulled down a game-high 12 rebounds for Colorado College, and Houska finished with 19 for the Tigers.