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Tars Turned Back by No. 8 Buffs

Deion Clark
Deion Clark

LAS VEGAS, Nev. (December 19, 2017) – Playing short-handed and the second of back-to-back games, Rollins couldn't overcome eight-ranked West Texas A&M, falling 88-60 to close its own Las Vegas Classic.

Deion Clark led the way for the Tars (8-5) with 19 points. Sam Philpott added 10 points and six rebounds. Nils Lehmann, Daniel Loh and Parker Davis each scored six.

Jordan Evans netted 28 for WT, who improves to 11-1 on the year. CJ Jennings tallied 14 points while Ryan Quaid recorded 13 points and 12 rebounds.

Rollins was held to 37 percent (18-49) from the field and just 4-of-19 from long range. The Buffs hit 50 percent (32-64) from the floor and outrebounded Rollins 41-30.

Rollins was again forced to shuffle its starting line-up, this time due to Jeff Merton sitting out from an illness. The Tars were slow to get into the flow and fell behind 15-4 at the first media timeout. Rollins got rolling and kept it close, trailing 21-11 midway through the first.

Blake Admire hit a deep triple to get Rollins to within 31-19 with 6:21 left in the half. WT then ran off a 15-2 run over the next four minutes to take a commanding 45-21 lead in the final minutes of the half.

West Texas took a 52-26 lead into the break.

Rollins started the second on a 6-0 run and closed to gap to 52-33. That would be as close as the Tars would get as the Buffs extended their advantage to 69-41 with 10 minutes to play.

The Tars are off for the holiday break and will next travel to Eckerd on Saturday, December 30 to get back into Sunshine State Conference play. Tip-off is set for 4 p.m. in St. Petersburg. Fans can catch the action live on the Tars Sports Network at RollinsSports.com.