Large Hole in the 1st Half too much for Crusaders at Texas Lutheran

Kaiser led the team with 18 points.
Kaiser led the team with 18 points.

SEGUIN, Texas – The University of Dallas men's basketball team fell in a 41-23 deficit through the first 20 minutes on Saturday to Texas Lutheran University. Despite chipping away in the second half nearly getting within single-digits, the Crusaders (7-15, 2-11 SCAC) could not overcome the gap in their final road contest of the year at Texas Lutheran (15-9, 9-4 SCAC). The setback officially eliminates Dallas from the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference (SCAC) Tournament. The Bulldogs remain tied for 2nd with Colorado College, who UD closes conference with at home a week from now.

NOTABLE STATISTICS

(Individual Notes)

- Tom Kaiser (Nashville, Tenn.) scored double figures for the 3rd straight game and 9th time this year. His game-high 18 points is the 2nd highest total for an individual game behind his record breaking 45 in January.

- Kaiser increased his field goal percentage to 72.7 as he went a perfect 7-for-7 on Saturday. The senior forward tallied 14 of his points in the 2nd stanza to go along with six rebounds.

- Darrius Colvin (Waco, Texas) was the other double-digit scorer (11). He also dished four assists. Rory MacCallum (Golden, Colo.) had seven points and five boards off the bench.

- Prince Giadolor (Rockwall, Texas) and Lorenzo Gonzalez (San Antonio, Texas) each had seven points. 

- Michael Sarrat (Colleyville, Texas) and Sarrat each appeared in their 100th career game.

- A trio of players reached double figures for TLU. Harris Jowell and Jordan Kouremetis poured 12 points apiece while Sterling Holmes had 11 (nine in 1st half). Alex Cage tossed in nine.

(Team Notes)

- The Bulldogs shot 50 percent from the floor in the game, while UD was 39.3 percent. Dallas also hit a pair of treys, while its opponent was 7-for-26. Each squad had 15 made free throws. UD was outshot 78.9 percent to 57.7 percent in that area.

- The Crusaders garnered more rebounds 37-33. 14 came on the offensive glass for Dallas. This helped a 17-8 advantage on 2nd Chance Points.

- Turnovers were nearly equal, with Dallas having one fewer 14-13. This helped a 14-10 edge in points off turnovers for the Navy and White.

- Dallas favored a 32-26 difference for points in the paint.

- TLU's bench scored a 28-14 difference.

HOW IT HAPPENED

Texas Lutheran scored eight of the first 10 points to begin an opening half where it shot 45.2 percent compared to 28 percent for the Crusaders. Kouremetis started the scoring immediately with a three-pointer. Giadolor responded with a layup two minutes in for Dallas to make it 3-2. The Bulldogs posted the next five points with Kouremetis making a layup and Zach Behr hitting a trey.

Down 13-5 at 12:03 in the first half, Kaiser started a 6-2 scoring swing for the road team with a pair of free throws. After the game's leading scorer added an inside basket, Giadolor would be fouled on an-and one opportunity. He missed the free throw keeping it 15-11 about halfway through the frame.

The Bulldogs surged ahead on 13 unanswered points over the next three minutes to build a commanding lead. TLU's largest lead of the contest would be 20 on three occasions. The first juncture it happened was at 3:25 with the score 37-17. The Crusaders trailed 41-23 at the break.

The Crusaders did not back down, swinging the momentum early in the next half. A layup by Gonzalez sparked an 11-4 run over the first two and a half minutes. The senior point guard capped the surge with a trifecta making it 47-34.

Texas Lutheran had an answer for the road team every time an attempt was made at narrowing the gap. Blake Ray countered with a three and Howell made a jumper to push the margin back to 18. Over the next few minutes, both sides traded points.

The Crusaders made it a 12-point game (54-42) with Giadolor finding a layup with about 12 minutes left. TLU immediately followed the next possession with another three by Kouremetis. The Bulldogs did post seven made threes in 26 attempts, but each seemed to come at the right moment when needed.

Colvin made Dallas' other trey of the game in between layups by Kaiser and MacCallum to complete a 7-0 run. The scoring spurt cut UD's deficit to 63-53 with six minutes remaining. It was the closest ground the Crusaders gained, as Texas Lutheran got another crucial trey by Behr. The teams exchanged baskets and then the Bulldogs secured the win at the free throw line. 

UP NEXT

Dallas concludes the remainder of its season with three at the Maher Center. The first of this stretch is with non-conference foe Arlington Baptist College on Tuesday. Tip-off is slated for 7:30 p.m.