LEVELLAND — Despite overcoming a 10-point halftime deficit, the third-ranked South Plains College men's basketball team fell to No. 22 Arizona Western 90-88 on Friday night at the Texan Dome.
Trailing 47-37 at the midway point, South Plains used an 8-0 run to begin the final stint, trimming the Matadors' lead to two on a Deshawn Corprew free throw. Jordan Brangers gave the Texans their first lead since the 14:14 mark of the first half with a 3-ball from the wing, putting South Plains up 54-53 lead with 14:40 to play.
Arizona Western (2-0) answered on their next possession when Alfonso Plummer connected with a 3 to put the Matadors back up 56-54. Lamont Taylor extended the lead to 72-65 with a jumper with 8:29 remaining. South Plains responded with a 7-0 run to tie the game at 74 on a layup from Corprew with 6:59 left. Brangers put South Plains up 77-74 with another 3-pointer, this time from the left corner with 6:38 to play. The Matadors used a 4-0 run to retake the lead 78-77 on a layup from Andre Jones. Jamir Coleman would then put the Texans (1-2) back up 79-78 with a jumper from 10 feet out with under six minutes remaining.
Tied at 85 at the 2:21 mark, Jones put the Matadors back up 87-85 with a conversion at the rim. Following a Brangers' free throw that tied the game at 88 with 37 ticks remaining, Jones hit what would be the eventual game-winner with a layup off the glass with 25 seconds remaining. The Texans' Greg Shead was able to get off a shot from just inside the 3-point as time expired, but it would fall short sending the Matadors home with the win in the final seconds.
Brangers finished with 35 points and was 12 of 27 from the field including 6-for-14 from the 3-point line. Corprew totaled 14 points and 10 boards in 23 minutes. Ben Perez finished with 13 points and four assists while Jamir Coleman and Marcel Thompson each had 10 points.
Plummer finished with 24 points and was 6 of 10 from 3. Jones had 19 points and seven boards while Brandon McGhee chipped in 11 points in 27 minutes.
South Plains shot 45 percent from the field in the contest and 50 percent in the second half. The Texans knocked down eight 3s and outrebounded the Matadors 45-35 on the glass. Arizona Western shot 43 percent from the field and forced 20 turnovers in the contest.
South Plains will return to the hardwood on Saturday when they tipoff against Coastal Bend College at 2 p.m. at the Texan Dome.