Even though the effort was better than two nights ago in a win at Centenary, the SDSU men’s basketball team lost at Oral Roberts on Jan. 30, 68-63.
An eight-point SDSU first-half lead didn’t last long as the Golden Eagles (13-10, 8-3) were up 10 with 6:11 to play. A 12-3 Jackrabbit run would cut the lead to a single point with less than a minute left.
“The one thing we did tonight was we competed,” said head coach Scott Nagy. “Even late when we were down 10, it would have been easy to pull up the tent and go home and our kids didn’t.”
“We made a lot of mistakes in the first half, when we had the chance to really push it out. I think we were up by eight, and that’s the same thing back home when we played Oakland, and that’s something we have to fix,” said junior guard Dale Moss. “When we have a team like this down, we have to really capitalize on the opportunity.”
The Jacks (11-11, 7-4) lived and died by the three as they hit on 11-of-29 shots, just two away from tying the school record of 31. Clint Sargent had a game-high 21 points, including six three-pointers. Freshman Nate Wolters tied a career high for the second game in a row with 17 points and three three-pointers.
“The reason we lost the game is that we took 29 threes and only 13 free throws and they shoot 30,” Nagy said. “We were just void of any inside game. We have to develop that. Anthony (Cordova) has to get his confidence back, because we need an inside game and we just have none right now.”
Oral Roberts, the number one rebounding team in the league, won the battle of the boards 43-41, despite getting dominated back in December in Brookings 49-29.
Coming down the stretch, SDSU will be having five of their final seven games at Frost Arena, including Southern Utah (6-15, 2-8) on Feb. 4 followed by UMKC (9-12, 3-7) in the second half of a doubleheader on Feb. 6.
With Southern Utah being the biggest team in the league, the Jacks will have to focus on improving their ability to score inside and work on getting to the free throw line if they want to get on a roll to close the season out strong.