Turnovers Prove Costly in Gents Overtime Loss to ORU
Saturday, January 5, 2008

SHREVEPORT—The Centenary men’s basketball team took two-time defending Summit League champion Oral Roberts into overtime on Saturday, but came up on the short end of the 71-62 score. The Gents committed a season-high 26 turnovers, including four in the overtime period, which led to 29 points for the Golden Eagles in the game.


Centenary (7-8, 1-2 Summit) managed to whether a near-perfect shooting storm from ORU in the first half. The Golden Eagles sank 17 of their 26 shot attempts for a sizzling 65.4 percent in the first 20 minutes of play, but led only 40-35 at the break. The Gents answered with a 60.9 percent (14-of-23) shooting effort of their own and fed off of three Justin Glenn blocks and 17 first-half points from Nick Stallings to stay close.


Oral Roberts (8-5, 3-0 Summit) could not pull away from the Gents and never led by more than nine points. Both teams seemed to hit a wall in the second half as no points were scored by either team over a five-minute span from 18:27 to 13:51. The drought was finally broken by Kelvin Sango’s single free throw for ORU. However, no bucket was made until another 1:21 passed on the clock when Jerrald Bonham scored for Centenary.


The Gents trimmed their nine-point deficit away and tied the game at 47 apiece and then again at 59-59 with 3:26 to play on a three-pointer from Tyrone Hamilton. Centenary could not get over the hump and grab the lead either time.


It seemed the Gents would finally get its chance with the scored tied at 62 when ORU’s Yemi Ogunoye missed a pair of free throws with 46 ticks left on the clock. Centenary held the ball and began its offense with 22 seconds remaining. The Gents were unable to get a good look and Hamilton was forced to toss up an off-balance three from deep. The shot missed the mark and ORU could not convert on the other end, sending the game into overtime.


Oral Roberts took control in the extra period, outscoring the Gents 9-0. Centenary’s four overtime turnovers came on four straight possessions and Robert Jarvis sank a three-pointer to cap the Golden Eagles’ victory.


Oral Roberts committed only 13 turnovers to the Gents’ 26 and shot 26 free throws to Centenary’s nine on the night. The Gents did out-rebound the much taller Golden Eagles 33-28 in the loss.


Stallings finished with a game-high 23 points and Hamilton pumped in 20 for Centenary. Both connected on four long balls on the evening. Glenn finished with a team-high six boards and four blocks.


Jarvis led ORU with 19 points, while Adam Liberty and Marcus Lewis added 16 and 11 points respectively.


The Gents will return to action on Thursday when they begin the first leg of a two-game Summit League road trip with a visit to Rochester, Mich., to take on Oakland. From there Centenary will travel to face league newcomer IPFW on Saturday.