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UTRGV Men’s Basketball drops WAC opener at California Baptist

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RIVERSIDE, Calif. – The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) Vaqueros men’s basketball team opened Western Athletic Conference (WAC) play with a 76-67 loss to the California Baptist University Lancers on Thursday at the CBU Events Center.

Graduate student Jordan Jackson led the Vaqueros (4-10, 0-1 WAC) with 17 points and six rebounds. Junior Javon Levi scored 16 points and five rebounds and five assists. Freshman Quinton Johnson II finished with 10 points and two steals. Sophomore Sean Rhea scored eight points with nine rebounds (six offensive) and three blocks.

Brandon Boyd led the Lancers (10-4, 1-0 WAC) with 25 points, five rebounds, four assists and two steals. Milan Acquaah scored 19 points with four rebounds, four assists and three steals. Ferron Flavors Jr. scored 14 points with six rebounds. Zach Pirog finished with eight points, eight rebounds and two blocks.

The Vaqueros led in the opening minutes, going up 4-2 on a Johnson layup. The Lancers led for most of the rest of the first half, going up by as much as six at 20-14 at the 9:50 mark.

Then, with the score 22-17, freshman Jamal Gaines bookended a 19-5 run with layups to put the Vaqueros up 35-27.

The Vaqueros still led by eight at 37-29 after a pair of Levi free throws and seven at 41-34 on a Levi jumper early in the second half.

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Boyd responded by scoring 11 points to power a 16-2 Lancers run that put the Lancers up 52-43.

The Lancers went up 58-48 with 10:14 remaining. That’s when the Vaqueros went on a 10-3 run, capped by back-to-back Levi layups, the second of which became a three-point play, to pull within 61-58, but that’s as close as they got.

UTRGV plays the WAC home opener on Thursday, Jan. 9 at 7 p.m. against Kansas City during Winter Texan Night at the UTRGV Fieldhouse. Winter Texans can purchase $5 general admission tickets and get free popcorn. Current UTRGV students get free general admission with a valid UTRGV student ID. Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased online at UTRGVTickets.com. Fans purchasing their tickets online prior to game day can save up to $2 per ticket. The party starts at Vaquero Village at 5:30 p.m..

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