TULSA, Okla. – The OCU men’s basketball team engaged in a see-saw battle complete with 23 lead changes on Saturday. The Stars fell to Rogers State in the 74-71 fight to the finish at the Reynolds Center.
The Stars (15-9, 8-8) had five men reach double-digit scoring in the game, but couldn’t hold off the late charge by the Hillcats that snapped a four-game OCU winning streak. Brandon Moton, a junior from Beaumont, Texas, had a team-high 16 points, three rebounds and three steals for OCU.
Dee Proby, a senior from Round Rock, Texas, put in 13 points and added four rebounds. Shane Rogers added 11 points and three rebounds. Nate Flowers and Orlan Jackman both chipped in 10 points for OCU. Flowers, a senior from Waldorf, Md., picked up his 14th double-double of the season with his 11 rebounds in the contest.
After Rogers State’s John Boyd swished a shot to tie the game at 42-42 with 16:59 to play, the Stars went on an 8-0 run to march to an eight-point lead, their largest of the contest. The Hillcats roared back with a 9-0 run of their own to get the 51-50 lead over OCU after a made basket by Rogers State’s Deveric Taylor.
The lead alternated with nearly every possession until another Taylor shot found its mark with 7:15 to play to put the Hillcats up 61-60. After more back and forth battle, OCU saw its last lead of the night after Rogers sank a close-range shot with 50 seconds to play and the scoreboard reading 71-70 in favor of the Stars. That would prove to be OCU’s last basket of the contest. Two costly turnovers left the Stars without a shot opportunity in the final seconds of the game as the Hillcats posted the 74-71 win.
OCU led 35-32 at the midpoint break, but couldn’t overcome the hot-handed Hillcats in the second half. Rogers State shot 62.1 percent from the field in the final period to clinch the win. Taylor was the high scorer of the night with 18 points for the Hillcats. He ended the evening as only the second scorer in Rogers State program history to tally 1,000 career points.
OCU next faces off in a Valentine’s Day tussle with John Brown (Ark.) Monday at 8 p.m. at Abe Lemons Arena.