Gents Shoot Well, Fall in Double-Overtime, 102-96, to La Tech
Sunday, December 13, 2009
SHREVEPORT-As always a heated hardwood rivalry is expected when Centenary battles Louisiana Tech and that was evident in Saturday night's non-conference battle as the Bulldogs overcame two overtimes to defeat the Gents, 102-96 in the Gold Dome.

The Gents (4-5, 1-1 Summit) had five players in double-figure scoring on the night, led by freshman Daman Starring and sophomore David Perez with 19. Senior Jerrald Bonham added 14, while newcomers Matt Marseille and Pedro Maciel had career-highs of 14 and 13 respectively.

It was Louisiana Tech that had the upper hand early, going up by as many as five (9-4) with just under 17 minutes to play.

However, Maciel entered the game and drained his first three-point attempt, which ignited a 13-0 run by the Gents. During that time, Maciel hit two treys, while senior Jerrald Bonham scored four points and Marseille chipped in with a big three.

Midway through the half, the Bulldogs made it a six-point (24-18) game on a three pointer, but freshman David Swartz contributed with four strong minutes off the bench, scoring seven points.

Despite a 4-0 run by Louisiana Tech, Centenary responded with three consecutive long balls by Starring, Marseille, and Perez to go up by 16 (43-27) near the four-minute mark.

A lay up by the Bulldogs put Maciel in position to net five straight points to give Centenary's its largest first-half lead at 19 (48-29) with 2:30 on the clock. Louisiana Tech hit a final three to send the Gents into halftime, leading 48-32.

Centenary drained 10-of-12 from the three-point line in the opening 20 minutes for an impressive 83 percent. Off the bench, Maciel had 11 for the Gents.

The second-half opened with competitive play as Louisiana Tech narrowed Centenary's lead to 14 with two lay ups. Perez responded in usual fashion when he hit his third and fourth three-pointer of the night.

With just under 16 minutes to play, Starring put the game at a 22-point tilt on his third trey. Louisiana Tech wouldn't allow the game to get out of reach as it continued to chip away at the Gents lead.

Going on a 20-6 run, the Bulldogs made it an 8-point (65-57) with 10 minutes to play. Perez stepped up to nail a deep three to end the offensive surge.

Following that shot, the Bulldogs scored six points in the paint to challenge the Gents with a three-point (75-72) contest. Starring fired off a three from the right side, but Louisiana Tech responded with one of its own.

With two minutes to play and up by three, Louisiana Tech proved their dominance from the outside, as DeAndre Brown drained his second consecutive long ball for three to tie the game at 78-78.

A Centenary turnover gave Louisiana Tech its first lead at 80-78 since 16 minutes remaining in the first half on a lay up. A five second violation in bounding the ball by the Bulldogs gave the Gents a second chance to score.

Marseille's lay up reached the bottom of the net after narrowly missing a Bulldog block. Evened at 80-80, the game reached overtime.

Louisiana Tech scored first, but Bonham and Starring stepped up and nailed treys to take the one-point advantage (83-82). Marseille hit one-of-two from the charity stripe before a drive through the lane by the Bulldogs tied the score once again, 87-87.

Playing in a second overtime, junior Roman Tubner used a steal and hit both free throws attempts, along with a three to give Centenary a one-point tilt (92-91). However, the Bulldogs used a 6-2 run to go up, 97-94 with one minute remaining.

Louisiana hit five free throws in the final five minutes of play that sparked a 102-96 lead.

"Lousiana Tech is a great team. They played well down the stretch and we expected them to," said head coach Greg Gary.

"I am extremely happy with the way our guys played. We will continue to learn and as we do, we will win close games like this one. It was a great atmosphere and that is how college basketball should be."

Centenary shot 55 percent (34-of-62) from the floor and an astounding 69 percent (20-of-29) from long range. Louisiana Tech connected on 35-of-66 for 53 percent.

The Gents shot an uncharacteristic 53 percent (8-of-15) from the free throw line and committed 20 turnovers, which allowed the Bulldogs to score 21 points.

Louisiana Tech out rebounded Centenary by just five, 36-31 led by Marseille with a team-high eight.

The Bulldogs got 28 points from Kyle Gibson and 22 points from Magnum Rolle.

The Gents will travel to Mississippi to face Ole Miss on Saturday, Dec. 19 at 1:00 pm and Mississippi State on Tuesday, Dec. 22 at 7:00 pm.