UTRGV loses to Sam Houston at the buzzer
RIO GRANDE VALLEY – The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) Vaqueros men's basketball team came back from a nine-point deficit over the final three and a half minutes before falling to the Sam Houston Bearkats 67-65 on a buzzer-beater on Wednesday at the UTRGV Fieldhouse.
Senior Justin Johnson led the Vaqueros (11-12, 2-8 WAC) with 22 points. Freshman Adante’ Holiman scored a career-high 15 points on a career-best 5-of-5 shooting from behind the arc with four assists. Graduate student Dima Zdor finished with eight points.
Qua Grant led the Bearkats (17-5, 7-3 WAC) with 16 points and three assists. Cameron Huefner scored 13 points. Kasoi Ezeagu scored 12 points with eight rebounds. Lamar Wilkerson scored 12 points with three rebounds.
The Vaqueros trailed 63-54 when a Johnson hit a layup with 3:22 remaining. Zdor and Johnson each hit a pair of free throws to bring the Vaqueros within one possession. Then, after a Huefner layup, Johnston hit a pair of free throws followed by a 3-pointer with 30 seconds left to tie the game at 65.
The Bearkats fed Grant with 4.2 seconds left to try to take the lead, but Zdor blocked the shot. The Bearkats inbounded to Huefner, who hit a turnaround jumper to end the game.
The game was tied at 5 in the opening minutes on a 3-pointer by sophomore Sherman Brashear. The Bearkats scored the next six points. Then, with the score 13-7, a 3-pointer by Holiman sparked an 11-0 run to give the Vaqueros their first lead at 18-13.
The Vaqueros still led by five at 23-18 on a 3-pointer by sophomore Derrius Ward before back-to-back Bearkats baskets tied the game. A Zdor layup put the Vaqueros up 25-23. The Vaqueros led again at 27-26 on a Johnson layup before the Bearkats scored the final four points to take a 30-27 halftime lead.
A Holiman 3 and a floater by junior Daylen Williams put the Vaqueros up 32-30 to start the second half.
A few minutes later, the game was tied at 34 on a Johnson floater. The Bearkats tried to slowly pull away from there, outscoring the Vaqueros 24-15 over a 10-and-a-half-minute span to go up 58-49.
UTRGV visits Tarleton on Saturday at 4 p.m. Fans can watch domestically on ESPN+ or internationally via WAC International.
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