Texas State freshman Shelby Vas Matt goes up for a kill in Thursday’s match.
AUSTIN — Quick. Remember a time when the Texas State Bobcats clawed and scratched for every point against a favored team.
Got it? OK. Erase that from memory, because it pales in comparison to what Texas State did Thursday night in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.
Let’s get this out of the way first: Yes, the Bobcats were swept by top-ranked Texas. Texas State hasn’t won a set in The Big Dance since 1998.
Mark down another win for Texas State.
Sounds good, doesn’t it?
After starting the season 0-5, the Bobcats won three out of their next four games, including tonight’s 79-58 victory over Cedarville University (Ohio). Texas State didn’t break much of a sweat as it turned in a complete performance in the 21-point win against the Division II program.
Here are some quick thoughts.
- Freshman forward Kavin Tilder-Gilbury is coming into his own. Tilder-Gilbury led the Bobcats in scoring down in Mexico and continued his strong play Wednesday night. He filled the stat sheet with nine points, eight rebounds, three assists, two blocks and one steal. Tilder-Gilbury said he doesn’t like to think of himself as a freshman, but a ‘basketball player.’
- Texas State did a good job of attacking Cedarville’s morphing zone. While shots were open from the outside (7 of 17 from beyond the arc), the Bobcats worked it inside to Emani Gant and Corey Stern. Gant finished with 14 points on 5-of-7 shooting and Stern only made one of his six shots, but got to the free-throw line 10 times (six makes) and grabbed 12 rebounds.
- Not sure what was up with senior forward Joel Wright, but he didn’t take his normal assortment of shots. Even though Wright got into early foul trouble, he didn’t put up a shot until early in the second half. Wright finished with four points on 2-of-4 shooting, grabbed three rebounds and handed out three assists in 15 minutes.
- Texas State a fine job of converting turnovers into points. The Bobcats forced 15 turnovers (seven steals) and scored 24 points off those turnovers. Three different players had two steals (Wright, Wesley Davis and Ray Dorsey).
Texas State returns to the court next Saturday at Texas.
Texas State’s Molly Aherns slams home a kill last year.
When members of the Texas State volleyball team and their supporters crowded around the televisions inside Bobcat Nation Bar and Grill on Sunday to find out where the selection committee would send the Bobcats in the NCAA Tournament, most already had a good idea of the destination.
Well, it didn’t take long for the great reveal as Texas State will face the No. 1 overall seed Texas Longhorns in the Austin Regional beginning Dec. 5. Texas A&M and UTSA round out the four combatants.
Texas State senior Duke DeLancellotti throws a pass against Troy (Photo by Joshua Thurston).
TROY, Ala. — Duke DeLancellotti did something last Friday that Tyler Arndt could not six days prior. DeLancellotti played well enough against a favored Sun Belt Conference opponent that it allowed incumbent starter and true freshman Tyler Jones valuable time to recuperate on the sideline.
When Texas State head coach Dennis Franchione turned to DeLancellotti to be the third starting quarterback in as many weeks, it was partially out of a lack of options and more so that the offense needed some kind of spark. Any confidence Franchione had in Arndt went out the window two weeks ago against Western Kentucky (1 for 5 with three interceptions) and instead of trotting out an injured Jones, the head coach rolled the dice with a guy that had something to prove.
Who is ready for some Friday football?
It might sound weird, but that’s life in the Sun Belt Conference.
Texas State and Troy will take the field at 1 p.m. today with different goals. For the Bobcats, a win would solidify their resume for a possible at-large bowl bid. For the Trojans, a win would actually get them bowl eligible.
It’s not going to be an easy task for Texas State, as it must contain Troy senior quarterback Corey Robinson. Not many teams have slowed down Robinson this year, so it’s paramount for the Bobcats to have their best game of the season at the right time.
Workers place the Sun Belt logo inside Bobcat Stadium this summer.
We’re still at four bowl-eligible teams in the Sun Belt Conference.
However, there might be a little bit of separation in knowing what teams will earn bowl bids from the Sun Belt as Louisiana-Lafayette, Arkansas State and Western Kentucky look like stone-cold locks.
Get ready for Friday’s game against Troy with this edition of the Texas State Sports Podcast.
Texas State beat writer Tyler Mayforth talks with Jeremy Wise of the Dothan Eagle about Friday’s clash between the Bobcats and Trojans.
If you’re subscribed on iTunes, it should already be downloaded for you.
Texas State head coach Dennis Franchione takes a look at the field during a recent game.
Texas State head coach Dennis Franchione showed nothing but respect for the Troy Trojans during his weekly Tuesday media luncheon.
First, Franchione made special mention of Troy quarterback Corey Robinson.
Texas State is bound to buy into Danny Kaspar’s system one of these days, right?
Until that happens, losses like Monday night to South Dakota are going to continue to happen. The Bobcats watched a 13-point lead in the second half evaporate in a 57-56 loss to the Coyotes in a return game from 2011-12.
Texas State is now 0-5 for the first time since the 2005-06 debacle.
Western Kentucky’s defense acted like a stone wall last Saturday.
No matter how Texas State tried to attack the Hilltoppers or where the Bobcats ran with the ball, Western Kentucky was there to stop them. It wasn’t like Texas State did a great job of keeping the Hilltoppers off-balance by trotting out a flat-footed, turnover-prone Tyler Arndt and then an injured Tyler Jones once Arndt fell victim to his demons (1 for 5 with three interceptions).
By the time the fourth quarter rolled around in the Bobcats’ 38-7 loss in front of 17,051 fans, head coach Dennis Franchione all-but gave up on trying to move the ball on the ground. Franchione put the blame on the offensive line.
“If you don’t block people, you don’t make yards,” Franchione said. “It’s hard to keep calling those plays when you don’t make any. We got dominated by their defensive front.”
When all was said and done, Texas State rushed the ball 29 times for a total of 21 yards. Let that sink in a bit before reading these tweets from last night.
Needless to say, it wasn’t a good night for the Bobcat offense.