ABILENE - The ACU Wildcats put together a solid effort Monday night, but it wasn't enough to take down the nation's 23rd-ranked team as Midwestern State knocked off the Wildcats, 74-62, in a Lone Star Conference men's basketball game at D.L. Ligon Coliseum.
The loss drops the Wildcats to 5-6 overall and 0-4 in the LSC, while the Mustangs improve to 10-0 and 5-0. ACU is off until Dec. 30 when it hosts Dallas Baptist in a non-conference game at 7 p.m. at Moody Coliseum.
The Wildcats have dropped 11 straight LSC games dating back to the 2010-11 season. ACU's last conference win was a 74-71 overtime victory at Angelo State on Feb. 5, 2011. After going 1-11 in 2009-10 and 1-13 in 2010-11, the Wildcats' 0-4 start this year means they are now 2-28 in LSC games dating back to the start of the 2009-10 season.
Monday night's game was a close affair for most of the way until the Mustangs were finally able to pull away late in the game for the 14-point win. ACU trailed 29-14 midway through the first half, but closed the game's first 20 minutes on a 20-8 run to trim the Mustangs' lead to 37-34 at halftime.
ACU scored the first four points of the second half on back-to-back jumpers from Zach Williams and Antonio Bell to nab a 38-37 lead. But the Mustangs quickly reeled off eight straight points to re-gain control of the contest at 45-38 with 17:21 left in the game.
The Wildcats, though, were able to get the lead back down to three points at 47-44 when Marcus Norman hit a layup with 13:31 left in the game. That was the Wildcats' final hurrah, however, as the Mustangs reeled off a 15-6 run over the next seven minutes to push the lead to 62-50.
ACU would get no closer than eight points the rest of the way as the Mustangs won for the 14th time in their last 15 games against the Wildcats.
Zach Williams led the Wildcats with 15 points, while Bell had 11 points. Kendall Durant had eight points and a game-high seven rebounds, but hit just 2 of 12 shots from the field. The Wildcats struggled from the field all night, hitting just 22 of 51 shots (43.1 percent), including just 2 of 12 from 3-point range (16.7 percent).
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