HILLSBORO, Kan. – The Southwestern College men's basketball team saw a double-digit second-half lead slip away, and watched its two-game streak come to a close Tuesday evening. The Moundbuilders fell to the Bluejays of Tabor College, 74-72, inside Tabor Gymnasium.
Sophomore Cameron Hunt led all scorers with 19 points in the game. The Duncanville, Texas, native went 7-for-16 from the floor, and added six rebounds, three assists and a steal to his resume' for the evening. Junior DJ Wallace added 15 points, while Barrington Hunter and Alan Hodge scored 10 points each.
Wallace led Southwestern's rebounding efforts with seven boards, while Hunt added six rebounds and Greg McCoy grabbed five boards.
Lance Carter and Julian Winton scored 17 points each to lead the Bluejays.
Southwestern (11-4, 4-4 KCAC) shot 42.2 percent (27-64) from the floor, and 34.5 percent (10-29) from three-point range. The Moundbuilders converted just 44.4 percent (8-18) of their free throws, and were out-rebounded by Tabor (8-6, 7-1 KCAC), 42-40.
Tabor jumped out to an 11-5 lead out of the gates, but the Moundbuilders were up to the challenge. A DJ Wallace bucket sparked a 10-0 Southwestern run, capped by an Alan Hodge triple that gave the Moundbuilders a 15-11 advantage by the 13:20 mark of the half. The two teams exchanged buckets for the rest of the half. Southwestern never trailed in the half, but its lead never grew past six until the final seconds of the period. The Moundbuilders closed the half on a 4-1 spurt, and took a 43-36 lead into the halftime intermission.
Southwestern appeared to be in control during the opening minutes of the second half. Barrington Hunter sank a trey to open an 11-4 half-opening run that gave the Moundbuilders their largest lead of the game, 54-40, with 15:49 still to play. Tabor took it from there, though. The Bluejays used a 20-6 run over the next nine minutes to come all the way back, and forced a 60-60 tie with 6:17 remaining in regulation. Two minutes later, Tabor took its first lead of the second half at 64-62 after a pair of free throws. A quick 6-2 spurt helped Southwestern regain a 68-66 lead with 2:33 to play, but it was all Tabor from there. The Jays scored the next six points in the game to take a 72-68 lead with 32 seconds to play. Hunt pulled the Moundbuilders to within two (72-70) with 19 seconds to play. The ensuing in-bounds pass was stolen by Southwestern, but the point-blank lay-up rolled off the back-iron and into the hands of a Bluejay. Tabor standout Lance Carter converted a pair of free throws after being fouled to give the Jays a 74-70 advantage. Hunter scored the final points of the game for Southwestern, but the Builders came up two points short, and were forced to swallow a 74-72 loss.
Tuesday's loss drops Southwestern to 11-4 on the season, and 4-4 in Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference play. The Moundbuilders will return to action on Dec. 30, traveling to Point Lookout, Mo., to face the Bobcats of the College of the Ozarks. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m. inside Keeter Gymnasium.