Lions defeat UCO, then suffer a loss to Pitt

Sophomore guard RJ Leverette drives to the basket on Jan. 26

Willie Brown/The Chart

Sophomore guard RJ Leverette drives to the basket on Jan. 26

After weather postponed games across the spring sports schedule for the Lions last week, the basketball team finally got to defend its home court for the last time this season on Monday evening as (12-12, 10-6 MIAA) Central Oklahoma came to town.  

Looking to cement their place in the MIAA Tournament the (12-12, 7-9 MIAA) Lions geared up to send the Bronchos home unhappy.

After the first five minutes, Austin Wright hit a corner three to put Southern up 19-16 with just over 12:00 left in the first half.  

A run by Central Oklahoma and a few turnover, plagued minutes for the Lions kept the Bronchos in the game, and with 6:35 left, they trailed by only three.  

Just before the end of the half ,a three from Central Oklahoma gave them the lead and as the teams went to the locker rooms, Southern trailed 40-37.

The second half was a different story.  The Lions played lockdown defense and heated up from the floor, helped in large part by Wright, who hit clutch three after clutch three, ending up with 16 points on the night.  

Outscoring Wright was junior Marquis Addison who went for 23 points and a career-high 13 rebounds, shooting 14-17 from the charity stripe.

Down the stretch, the Bronchos made attempts to crawl closer but in the end Southern would not be beat as they struck up the band after an 85-77 victory.

With this victory, Southern qualified for the 2013 MIAA Basketball Tournament and  the team looks to build more momentum.

The Lions traveled to play Pittsburg State on Wednesday. The Lions did not come out to play in the first half as the Gorillas took the lead into halftime at 32-49.

“The true analysis of the game is we lost the basketball game in the first half,” said Head Coach Robert Corn.

The Lions almost caught up to the Gorillas in the last eight seconds of the game with just a one point difference, but due to a foul, the Gorillas scored the two free throws to make the final score 91-94.

Despite the loss, the Lions had three players with double figures. Addison had 29 points, Jordan Talbert had 16 points, and RJ Leverette had 15.

The Lions will return to action on March 2 when they travel south to play Central Oklahoma.