The Eagles basketball team surrendered its final road game of the season 94-75 to the University of Arkansas-Fort Smith on Saturday afternoon, the last road game for Men’s Basketball Head Coach Dan Hays’ with the team.
Hays said the team started struggling in the second half of the game against the Lions.
“We just kind of ran out of gas,” Hays said. “We were the only team in our conference who played three games this week – we played Monday, Thursday, Saturday – and we were game, but just didn’t have the energy to beat a team that’s one game out of first place.”
Oklahoma Christian University began scoring right away, but UAFS quickly caught up and took control of the court from five minutes after tip-off to the final buzzer. The Eagles stayed in close range of regaining the lead, trailing 45-38 at halftime.
With 11:33 left, the score was 61-53 and within four minutes, the Lions increased their lead to 75-60.
At this point John Moon had four personal fouls and with 6:31 left Elijah Strickland reached his fourth foul as well, causing the game to be tougher than before, according to Hays.
A jump shot by the Lions’ Dalton Glapion set the score to 94-75 with one minute to play and a missed 3-pointer by Luis Lopez concluded the game.
Highlights for the Eagles included Moon’s 26 points, nine rebounds and shooting 10-14 in field goals, while freshman Daniel Eibel recorded 17 points and five assists.
Strickland was the third Eagle to reach double digits with 16 points and 3-5 shooting from behind the arc.
The team enters its final week of season play and prepares for Hays’ last game as head coach on Feb. 27.
“I’ve got a lot of mixed feelings about things and this week is going to be a long, interesting week for me,” Hays said. “I’ve never been in this situation before, I’m going to have to wait and see what happens.”
The Eagles host St. Edward’s University on Thursday at 7:30 p.m.
Statistics provided by the Oklahoma Christian University Sports Information office.