SHREVEPORT, Louisiana – Lamar State College Port Arthur played close but couldn't get past a tough Angelina College in the quarterfinal round of the NJCAA Region 14 Tournament on Thursday, falling to the Roadrunners 65-57 at the Gold Dome on the campus of Centenary College of Louisiana.
Struggling at the free throw line, especially in the second half, the No. 10-seeded Seahawks finished their season in a frustratingly close offensive battle against the No. 2 Roadrunners. The Seahawks hit just 15 of 26 in the elimination postseason game.
"If we had shot free throws better, we could have won this game," said LSCPA Head Coach Lance Madison. "We could have helped ourselves by hitting our free throws but it just didn't happen."
The Seahawks, who finish the year 15-17, built a 7-2 lead to start the game, appearing to be on their way to another win in dominating fashion. Angelina battled back, though, tying the game at 14-14 with just under nine minutes left to play in the first half.
That's when the Roadrunners took off on an 11-4 run over the next four-and-a-half minutes. Sophomore Jamyus Jones finally knocked down a 3-pointer with 4:15 left in the half to stop the Angelina momentum. Devaughn Thomas hit two free throws and Jones added another bucket for the Hawks to finish the half at 29-23.
"We were tired," Madison said. "We played a physical game Tuesday night (against first-round foe Trinity Valley Community College) and we were a little tired tonight. Angelina's depth wore us down some but I never thought we couldn't win this game."
It didn't take long for the Seahawks to cut Angelina to a one-possession lead at 30-27 thanks to a pair of free throws from Jones and a dunk from Thomas. Darrell Jones followed with back-to-back buckets to pull LSCPA to within one at 32-31 at the 16:23 mark. Finally, with 12 minutes left to go, the game was tied again at 35-35 after Thomas hit a free throw and Ferontay Banks nailed a 3-pointer for LSCPA.
From there, though, the Roadrunners took off again, outscoring the Seahawks 7-0 over the next three minutes to take a 47-38 advantage.
The Seahawks would get it as close as four at 54-50 but couldn't overcome their free throw struggles as the clock continued to wind to the 65-57 final and the end of the 2019-2020 campaign.
"We had a good season and the kids played well," Madison said. "We beat a good Trinity Valley team in the first round. We've established a culture of winning at Lamar State and we're proud of that and proud that we do well enough to make the tournament every season."
Christyon Eugene and Chance Brown each had 11 points to lead the Roadrunners' scoring.