Seguin, Texas – Trinity's men's basketball team opened Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference play with a 76-66 loss to Texas Lutheran University on Sunday afternoon.
The Tigers led for most of the first half, but the largest margin was just five points as the Bulldogs were able to keep the game close by hitting 16-22 (72.7%) from the foul line in the period.
Trinity led 27-23 with 4:10 remaining, but Texas Lutheran battled back to tie the game with four straight points. The Bulldogs broke another tie with a three-point shot in the final minute to take a 38-35 lead, but the Tigers answered with a last-second shot to make it a 38-37 game at the break.
Texas Lutheran scored the first eight points of the second half to push that lead to nine (46-37), as well as leading by as many as 13 points with 10:38 remaining. That's when Trinity made its move, tying the game with a 16-3 run to make it 62-62 with five minutes left.
Trinity was not able to pull in front, though, and Texas Lutheran ended the Tiger streak with eight unanswered points to regain control of the game. Trinity hit just 1-8 from the field over the final five minutes, as Texas Lutheran pulled away for the win.
Trinity fell to 2-6 overall and 0-1 in conference, while Texas Lutheran evened its record to 5-5 overall and 2-1 in SCAC play.
The Tigers are now 11-9 against the Bulldogs since the 2000-01 season, though Texas Lutheran has now won four straight games in the series.
Stephen Molina and David Nickell came off the bench with 13 points each, combining to shoot 10-15 from the field. Molina also tied for the team lead with four assists and hit 3-6 from three-point range.
Jordan Lippman led Trinity with 19 points, hitting 8-11 from the free throw line, and adding five rebounds and four assists.
Ben Hanley pulled down a career-high 10 rebounds to go with eight points scored in the game.
The Tigers finish off 2019 with another SCAC game tomorrow evening, facing off against Southwestern (TX) University at 5:30 p.m.