FORT WORTH, Texas – Wednesday night, the No. 16 ranked University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma (9-3, 4-1 SAC) battled their way to a thrilling 84-76 victory at Texas Wesleyan University (9-3, 3-2 SAC). In the highly-anticipated contest, the lead was exchanged eight times, before the Drovers walked away with the victory.
The Drovers got off to a tremendous start, holding a 13-3 lead with 13:57 remaining in the first half. With 7:40 to go in the opening half, the Rams were able to claim a 21-20 lead, and they were able to take a 37-31 lead into halftime.
Following the break, the Drovers opened the half on a 7-0 run to claim a 38-37 lead with 18:30 to go in regulation. With 10 minutes remaining in the second half, Texas Wesleyan clung to a 55-50 lead, however the Drovers would tie the score at 57-57 with under nine minutes to play. Science & Arts reclaimed the lead at 59-57 with 7:30 remaining, and they continued to extend the lead until the final buzzer.
As a team, the Drovers shot 29-69 (.420) from the field and 5-19 (.263) from 3-point range, while the Rams shot 27-68 (.397) from the field and 4-25 (.160) from deep. Both teams shot the ball well at the free-throw line, but the Drovers held a slim advantage by going 21-25 (.840) while the Rams were 18-24 (.750). In the rebounding battle, each team was able to pull down 37 boards.
Cameron Hines (SR/Ft. Cobb, OK) and Stephon Hall (SR/Oklahoma City, OK) paced the Drovers offensive attack. Hines concluded with 20 points and three rebounds, while Hall added 18 points three rebounds, three assists, and a pair of steals.
Gerard Makuntae (SR/Austell, GA) produced a double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds in the win. Trenton Sandifer (SR/Dallas, TX) also scored in double figures, closing with 10 points, three rebounds, and a pair of steals.
Rory Pantophlet (JR/Philipsburg, Sint Maarten) was a force in the paint, contributing eight points and 11 rebounds. Rudy Pittman (FR/Tulsa, OK) added a spark off the bench, chipping in nine points and five rebounds. Jaden Harrell (FR/Oklahoma City, OK) scored four big points as he went 4-4 at the charity stripe down the stretch.
The Drovers will now head into their winter-break before returning to the hardwood on Saturday, January 1 as they host Central Christian College. Tip-off is scheduled for 3:45 PM CT on New Year’s Day inside Drover Fieldhouse.