San Antonio - After a strong second half performance, the Tiger men's basketball team defeated the University of Dallas (TX) 64-57 at home to begin their Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference schedule.
Trinity got off to a slow start in the first half of play and struggled to get things going offensively. After nearly 15 minutes of play, the Tigers were only 3-20 from the field, and the Crusaders were able to grow the lead as high as 13 points.
The home team continued to push forward though, hitting their last four shots from the field, and converting 9-10 from the foul line in the first half to make it a 29-24 deficit at the half.
That momentum carried into the second half, and the Tigers were able to gain their first lead of the game as Aaron Knopp's turnaround jumper made it a 30-29 advantage.
Both teams continued to battle, and the lead see-sawed back and forth a few times before Trinity was able to recapture it for the final time with just over eight minutes remaining. The Tigers then went on a 14-2 run to earn a comfortable 11 point margin with just under four minutes left in the game.
Dallas was determined to make the home team work for the win, as they were able to bring the game within four points in the final minute of the game, but Trinity closed out the contest with strong free throw shooting to secure the victory.
Tonight's win broke a two-game losing streak for the Tigers, as they move to 7-4 on the season and 1-0 in SCAC play. The Crusaders also moved to 7-4 this season, but earned their first conference loss of the year.
Danny Rivara picked up a career-high 15 rebounds tonight and helped the Tigers defensively by eliminating the Crusaders' second chance shots with 13 defensive boards.
Isaiah Specks led the team in scoring with 14 points, sinking 6-12 from the field and 2-3 free throws.
Knopp followed closely behind with 12 points on 6-9 shooting, as well as a season-high eight rebounds.
Matt Jones chipped in 10 points of his own, led by a strong 6-6 performance at the free throw line.
Trinity will return to action tomorrow afternoon to wrap up its SCAC opening weekend, hosting Colorado College at 4:00 p.m. in Calgaard Gymnasium.