Cowboys Fall for First Time

Cowboys Fall for First Time

WARNER —  Playing a good part of the game without their two stalwart sophomores, the Connors State Cowboys hung tough against a talented Murray State team, but too many fouls and turnovers proved costly as Connors suffered its first loss of the season 62-60 to the Aggies in OCAC action Monday night at Melvin Self Fieldhouse.

Big center Jarquavious Cain picked up a pair of fouls in the first five minutes of the game and spent the rest of the half on the bench and picked up two more early in the second half forcing him to sit again. Scoring leader Jahcoree Ealy picked up three fouls in the first half and was a non-factor from the field putting up just five shots on the night, all in the second half.

Connors led most of the first half and owned a 31-26 lead at halftime. But Murray State scored seven unanswered points out of the gate in the second half to take a lead they would never surrender at 33-31. Meanwhile the Cowboys struggled to find the bucket in the second half, scoring just two points in the first seven minutes of the half and trailed by seven with five minutes to play

But Connors would not go quietly and slowly whittled the lead to 58-54 with 2:30 to play. The Aggies were called for consecutive charging fouls giving the Cowboys some more opportunities. Ealy hit a pair of free throws with 1:24 left to make it 58-56. Murray State forced Connors to foul but converted only 3-of-6. Connors got a charity from Brandon Taylor and NEO transfer Gavin Harris nailed a three with 3.7 seconds left to get to within one but the Cowboys were unable to get the ball back for a last shot.

"Foul trouble hurt us and our two key players not getting many minutes didn't help any and we turned the ball over too many times (11 for the game) and the first five minutes of the second half really killed us," said Cowboys coach Bill Muse.

Freshman Jordan Tillmon was the leading scorer for the Cowboys (8-1, 4-1) with 17 points followed by Harris with 13 and Ealy with 11. Kobe Burgess came off the bench to lead the Aggies (8-2, 5-0) scoring with 15 points.