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Mens Basketball: Bearkats cage Bears 63-52

Sports Reporter

Published: Thursday, January 17, 2013

Updated: Thursday, January 17, 2013 23:01

Photo Credit: Connor Hyde| The Houstonian

Photo Credit: Connor Hyde| The Houstonian

HUNTSVILLE- Michael Holyfield’s thundering dunk to open the first half set the tone for Sam Houston State’s 63-53 victory against Central Arkansas Thursday night at Johnson Coliseum.

UCA’s high scoring offense was unable to capitalize in open paint and allowed the Bearkats to take an early lead and establish first half momentum to stay out of reach of a Bear comeback.

Aaron Harwell and Jeremy Mckay shot together for 50 percent beyond the ark with three consecutive three pointers to give the Bearkats early first quarter momentum.

The Bears regained composure and closed SHSU’s 11 point lead to three (18-15) with 7:11 left in the first half and go into halftime down by seven (31-24).

Bearkat guard Paul Baxter came out of the tunnel strong for SHSU with a towering shot inside the paint to give the Kats an early seven point lead in the second half. Baxter would give SHSU a second wave of momentum with seven minutes left in the match with a fast break and sinks a two-point shot to draw the foul and extend SHSU’s lead by 13.  

UCA stayed within a 10 point deficit, capitalizing on offensive rebounds, second chance shots under the basket, and fast breaks late in the second half. Bearkats were able to hold at least a 10 point lead for the majority of the second half; 14 points at most.

SHSU lead was narrowed to six with one minute left but UCA failed to sink desperate three-point shots in remaining seconds and sent SHSU shooters to the free-throw line to close the game.

The Bearkats shot for 66 percent at the free-throw line and 41 percent beyond the ark.

SHSU will square off against conference rival Oral Roberts Saturday January 19 at Johnson Coliseum.

For tickets and a full roster, visit www.gobearkats.com.

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