ORU men finish strong to fell Texas State
BY Staff Reports
Thursday, December 06, 2012
12/06/12 at 6:17 AM
SAN MARCOS, Texas - Oral Roberts got a sneak preview of life on the road in the Southland Conference. Give the Golden Eagles a passing grade for a come-from-behind performance in the dress rehearsal.
Damen Bell-Holter scored a season-high 21 points, Warren Niles added 21 and ORU got 21 bench points (second-most against an NCAA opponent this season) in an 86-77 victory Wednesday night over Texas State at Strahan Coliseum.
Texas State, a first-year member of the Western Athletic Conference, was in the Southland Conference last season, going 13-17 overall, 9-5 at home and 5-11 in league play to finish fifth in the league's Western Division.
So, this was sort of a game to see how ORU might measure up when the Golden Eagles begin their first Southland tour of duty next month.
Early indicators were not good. Texas State scored the first seven points. The Bobcats hit their first eight shots and led by as many as 12. ORU's Steven Roundtree played only four first half minutes due to foul trouble and picked up his fourth foul early in the second half.
And - no big deal - the Golden Eagles shrugged off adversity to lead by as many as 13 points in the second half.
"Great win considering how we started the game," coach Scott Sutton said.
ORU improved to 5-4 and will enter finals week with a .500 or better record for the fourth consecutive year. The Golden Eagles have won three consecutive road games since a season-opening loss at UTEP and they'll get a 13-day break before resuming the season with a road game against eighth-ranked Arizona.
Bell-Holter, a senior post player, scored his most points since getting 22 in consecutive road games at Oakland and IPFW in January of his sophomore season. He also produced eight rebounds and a season-high three assists.
Niles scored 17 first-half points and, by game's end, had moved into ninth place on ORU's career scoring list.
"Warren (got) hot again and hit some ridiculous shots - tough, tough shots with guys all over him," Sutton said.
Shawn Glover had the hottest hand after halftime and finished with 15 points.
"Funny story," Sutton said. "Shawn loses a contact at the end of the first half and gets fouled on one of the first couple of possessions of the second half and misses his first free throw. I don't know if he's going to be able to play. He can't see. Then he goes about five of the next six minutes and he's the best player on the floor."
Texas State trailed by three points shortly after Roundtree got whistled for a fourth foul. Then Glover scored six points in a 10-0 run that gave ORU its biggest lead. The Bobcats, who dropped to 3-5, got no closer than five the rest of the way.
"I'm proud of our guys," Sutton said. "These are the type of games really good teams find a way to win."
Original Print Headline: ORU rally fells Texas St.
ORU up next
8 p.m. Dec. 18