Incarnate Word 85, A&M-Commerce 61
Location: McDermott Center * San Antonio, Texas
Records: A&M-Commerce (2-5, 0-3 LSC); Incarnate Word (6-3, 2-1 LSC)
Up Next: vs. Drury * Saturday, December 13 * 3 p.m. * The Field House
SAN ANTONIO, Texas – In a story that has become far too familiar this season, A&M-Commerce dug itself an early hole against Incarnate Word and was unable to recover, falling to the Cardinals 85-61 at the McDermott Center. The loss is the third-straight for A&M-Commerce, which falls to 2-5 on the year and 0-3 in Lone Star Conference play.
Desmond King led the Lions with 17 points and eight rebounds on the night, falling two boards short of his second double-double of the season. Devondrick Walker finished with 11 points and five rebounds for the Lions with Preston Whitley adding 10 points off the bench before fouling out.
Andrew Davis had a solid night up in the paint for A&M-Commerce, finishing with nine points and five rebounds. LaBree Sledge also had seven points and four assists to lead the Lions. Mouhamadou N'doye posted four rebounds with a pair of blocks for A&M-Commerce.
As has been the case in nearly every game early this season, a sluggish start put the Lions in a deep hole early. After taking an early 3-2 lead following a three-pointer from Sledge, A&M-Commerce missed eight of its next nine shots as Incarnate Word used a 12-0 run spanning three minutes to take control early at 14-3.
The Lions would claw back to within 10 at 22-12 with just over 13 minutes remaining in the half, but the Cardinals found another scoring surge, stringing together a 12-1 run over the next five minutes to take a commanding 21-point lead at 34-13. Incarnate Word would extend that advantage to 25 points at 50-25 at halftime, giving the Lions its largest intermission deficit of the season.
Shaun Umeh and Ian Markolf paced the Incarnate Word offense in the first 20 minutes, notching 12 and 10 points, respectively, as the Cardinals dominated the Lions in the lane, outscoring A&M-Commerce 34-10 in points in the paint. Incarnate Word also shot a stellar 62.9 percent from the floor in the first half, compared to just 25.7 percent for the Lions, who hit just nine of their 35 shots.
Incarnate Word kept A&M-Commerce at bay throughout the second half, extending its lead to 33 points at 75-42 with just over seven minutes remaining in the contest. A late 12-3 run by A&M-Commerce trimmed the final margin to 24 at 85-61 as Incarnate Word snapped its two-game skid against the Lions.
The Cardinals closed out the game shooting 57.4 percent from the floor, hitting 35 of its 61 shots, while A&M-Commerce shot just 29.4 percent, including hitting just five of its 16 three-pointers.
Incarnate Word saw six players finish with double figure point totals on the night, led by 15 from Chris Johnson while also adding team-highs with seven rebounds and eight assists. Markolf and Umeh each finished with 12 points while Jordan Roddy, Denzel Livingston and Dionelle Rucker each added 10 points for the Cardinals.
A&M-Commerce now takes a break from Lone Star Conference play, returning to Commerce for a short two-game homestand at the Field House. The Lions host Drury on Saturday, December 10, looking to avenge an 87-74 defeat in Springfield, Mo., on November 19. Tip-off against the Panthers is set for 3 p.m. Saturday afternoon.