by JOSHUA RAMIREZ/Sports Editor
The South Plains College men’s basketball team set its sights on the Region V Tournament after split its last two game of the regular season.
The Texans finished the regular season with a 21-8 record overall, going 12-4 in the WJCAC. SPC finished second in the conference, one game behind Odessa College. New Mexico Junior College and Frank Phillips College also advanced to the Region V Tournament after finishing third and fourth in the conference, respectively.
The Texans suffered a loss in their regular-season conference finale, falling to Western Texas College in a hard fought game on Feb. 25 at The Scurry County Coliseum in Snyder.
The Westerners came out strong, out-scoring the Texans 45-39 in the first half. The Texans fought hard after the break but were unable to overcome the deficit, falling 98-90.
The Westerners also out-shot the Texans from the field, shooting 46.9 percent while holding the Texans to 39.7 percent in the game. The bulk of the Westerners’ offense came from Xavier Ledet, who had a double-double in the game with 34 points and 18 rebounds.
The Texans shared the ball well against WTC, dishing out 16 assists as a team, and ended the game with four players scoring in double figures.
Jerron Love had a career offensive performance, scoring 26 points in 35 minutes of play, and pitched in four rebounds and four assists in the game.
Deontae North played all 40 minutes of the game and pitched in 18 points and five rebounds
Che Bob and Roberto Gallinat made strong contributions on offense, scoring 14 and 10 points, respectively.
The loss to the Westerners snapped a six-game conference winning streak for the Texans.
SPC locked up a postseason berth with a convincing 99-67 victory at Clarendon College on Feb. 18. The Texans’ rout of the Bulldogs was the sixth consecutive conference victory, bringing the Texans record to 21-7 overall and 12-3 in conference play.
The Texans made offense difficult for the Bulldogs, holding them to just 31 percent shooting from the field. SPC took advantage of poor shooting and out-rebounded the Bulldogs, 49-33, in the game.
The Texans scored at will in the game, putting the pressure on early by outscoring Clarendon 48-38 in the first half.
SPC was powered by the three-man attack of Bob, North, and Gallinat, who enforced their will on the Bulldogs throughout the game.
Bob out-did his Player of the Week performance, recording a double-double against the Bulldogs with 30 points and 15 rebounds. Bob shot better than 50 percent from the field, scoring on 13-of-20 shots and making three of four free throws.
North showcased his offensive talents, posting a double-double of his own in the game, with 20 points on six-of-seven shooting from behind the three-point arc, and 11 defensive rebounds.
Gallinat was in a groove of his own against Clarendon, scoring 21 points on nine-of-19 shots and dishing out four assists.
With regular-season play ending,the Texans turn their sights to the Region V Tournament that will be held on March 2 – March 5 in Brownwood.
The defending Region V champions will be looking to repeat their performance this year. The Texans are the second seed going in to the Region V Tournament and faced Hill College in the first round on March 2. Results were not available at press time.