Lions begin season 0-2 after Westminster Conference Tournament


Photo Credit | Joseph Miller

Deonta Terrell dunks the ball over a defender

Evans Dennis, Sports Writer

By: Evans Dennis | Sports Writer

The Texas A&M University-Commerce men’s basketball team’s match up with Dixie State and Westminster this past weekend ended with a pair of losses in the Westminster Conference Challenge Tournament, giving the Lions their first 0-2 start in the Jaret Von Rosenberg era.

Texas A&M-Commerce finished 24-9 in 2018-19 and were picked to finish third in the Lone Star Conference preseason poll this year. The Lions are coming off their third consecutive trip to the NCAA South Central Regional Tournament. Senior Deonta Terrell is the team’s returning leading scorer, averaging 9.8 ppg last season.

A&M-Commerce fell to Dixie State University 71-66 at Behnke Field House on Friday evening in their season opener. Lions shot 35.5 percent from the field (22-of-62) in the game with 32 points in the first half and 34 in the second half.

The Lions were limited to a 9-of-38 (23.7 percent) clip from three-point range and 68.4 percent (13-of-19) from the charity stripe. The Lions were unable to connect on a field goal in the final 4:36 of the game. The transition of going from at least two players that are “go to” players in the final minutes, to zero, has poised an issue as the Lions continue to try and find their identity.

Deon Barrett led the Lions in scoring with 19 points in the game, including five three-pointers. Deonta Terrell scored 18 points with five rebounds and three assists, along with Rodney Brown adding nine points and a team-high nine rebounds.

A&M-Commerce attempted to bounce back in their second game, but fell short 88-77 to Westminster College and failed to come home with a win in the tournament.

The Lions conceded a run early in the second half of Saturday night’s game against Westminster College and could not come back. The Lions dropped both games of the LSC/Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Challenge hosted by Westminster.

Five Lions scored in double figures, led by 15 points from Barrett on 6-of-15 shooting. Leo Lara had a career-high 14 points Austin Grandstaff scored 12 points, with each player making four three-pointers. Brown scored 11 points and had a team-high eight rebounds, while Terrell scored 10. The Lions were out-rebounded in the game 37-26 in the game.

Next Matchup

A&M-Commerce will now return home for a five game homestand in the Field House, starting with the home opener on Friday night at 7 p.m. vs. Central Baptist.