By Brenden Snow
A very special Monday night game for the Texas State Bobcats vs the South Alabama Jaguars as it was Senior Night for the Maroon and Gold. A high emotional game for the whole team and especially for the team’s 4 seniors, Bobby Conley, Ojai Black, Maljhum Mcrea and Kavin Gilder-Tilbury. The Bobcats came out firing on all cylinders from the get go and took their final game in Strahan Coliseum of the season 90-64.
It was a season high in points for Texas State and they were led once again by their senior star, KGT. Gilder-Tilbury tied a career high in points tallying 26 and grabbed 11 rebounds to go with. KGT wasn’t the the only senior getting in on the fun though.
Ojai Black had himself a game as well scoring 14 points and dishing out 5 assist in just 25 minutes. Black shot 5-7 from the field while going 1-1 from beyond the arc and going 3-3 from the freethrow line, a very efficient night from the senior guard.
The other senior in play was Bobby Conley (Mcrea did not play due to injur). Conley did not have a great scoring night but the statline he had speaks volume to the player he has been all year. Conley went just 1-6 from the field and 0-4 from deep for just 2 points. But Conley still finds ways to impact the game in other ways. He grabbed 4 boards, dished out 6 assists and recorded a steal in the win. His grind and grit style of play was in full force all night.
It was great to see a handful of the young guys also get in on the action and show a little glimpse of the future. Freshman phenom Nijal Pearson got back on track last night after struggling often over the past few weeks. Pearson 15 points with 12 of those coming in the first half, help leading to a halftime lead of 45-27. Pearson also added in 4 assist and 3 rebounds, and also went 3-3 from the charity stripe, big news for the Bobcats.
Some other young guys that got in on the fun include Marlon Davis and Nedeljko Prijovic. The two freshman both put in double digit scoring efforts with Davis scoring a career high 11 and Nedja tying his career high with 10.
Proof that almost every shot was falling for the bobcats lies in the stats. The team shot 34-58 (58.6%) from the field overall. The three ball was falling as well as the team made 9 of their 21 attempts, good for 42.9%. Even the free throws were falling for the team, despite that being a man one of the team’s’ biggest weaknesses. Shooting 92.9% from the stripe, on 13-14 shooting.
The win put the team’s record at 17-11 record overall with a 10-6 record in the conference. That is good enough to put the Bobcats 5th in the Sun-Belt standings just 1 game separating them from 2nd place Arkansas State, with the two Georgia schools in between.
Texas State will take to Louisiana for the rest of the season as they will play 8-8 Louisiana-Lafayette on Thursday, then finish off the regular season in Monroe taking on the 2-14 Warhawks. Following the regular season the team will be right back in the Pelican State for the Sun-Belt Conference Tournament starting March 8th.