Wilburton ---Eastern Oklahoma State rallied from a 19-point deficit with 15:14 remaining in the second half to overtake Connors State 93-91 in a hotly contested Oklahoma Collegiate Athletic Conference clash Monday night at Dunlap- Field House.
The loss drops the Cowboys to 13-3 overall and 2-1 in OCAC play, while Eastern State is now 13-1 and 2-1 in league play. Connors returns home to play Redlands Community College Thursday night at Melvin Self Field House. Tip-off is 7:30 p.m.
Connors had four players score in double figures, but it was the inability of the Cowboys to handle the Mountaineers tenacious defensive pressure resulting in turnovers and easy baskets underneath.
"I thought conditioning would come into play and missing our best player who is no longer on the team," said Cowboys head coach Bill Muse. "This is a tough game to start off the second semester and on the road.
"It's a team that plays hard and pressures you. We just ran out of gas," said Muse.
Isiah Jones led the Cowboys scoring with 21 points followed by Burke Putnam's 19
Eastern connected on 11 from behind the arc and 14-lof-19 at the stripe while Connors hit on 3 three pointers and was 25-of-32 at the free throw line.
Stephen Richardson and Elisha Hobbs led the Mountaineers charge with 20 and 18 points respectively. Dante Adams scored 13 with Devin Moseley and Mike Turray adding 12 and 11 points each.
Eastern did not get their first lead until the 5:07 mark, 76-75. Connors tied it at 76-all on a Sidberry free throw. However, the Mountaineers took the lead on a trey by Richardson with 4:33 remaining to make it 79-76.
Connors grabbed a 90-89 lead with 42 seconds remaining on a pair of free throws by Callon Haydon.
However Eastern outscored the Cowboys 4-1 down the stretched to get the win.
EASTERN STATE 93, CONNORS STATE 91
Connors State 49 42--91
Eastern State 36 57—93
Connors State (13-3, 2-1)—I. Jones 21, Putnam 19, T. Jones 17, Sidberry 15, Haydon 9, Lowe 5, Graham 4, Tanksley 1.
Eastern State (13-1, 2-1)—Richardson 20, Hobbs 18, Adams 13, Moseley 12, Tray 11, Byrd 9, Lemma 8, Pratt 2.