No. 25 Tarleton's late season struggles continued Thursday as they were bounced from the Lone Star Conference tournament in the opening game against Angelo State for the team's fourth straight loss.
The Texans struggled mightily in the first half.
After almost 13 minutes of play, they trailed the Rams 20-12 and were shooting only 22 percent from the floor.
Nine of the team's 12 points had been scored by Romond Jenkins with the other three coming from a three-point shot by Chantz Chambers almost 11 minutes earlier in the game.
The struggles didn't subside over the remainder of the half, but Tarleton did improve their standing in the game.
The Texans eventually faced their largest deficit over the period with 2:42 remaining and the Rams up by 12, 33-21.
Deshawn Riddick hit a three, while Curtiss Anderson and Anthony Davis converted trips to the free throw line to give the Texans a 7-0 run over a span of 1:40. Over the final seconds, Angelo State managed to convert two free throws, while Anderson scored a layup at the buzzer to end the half with the Rams leading 35-30.
Early on in the second half it appeared as though the Texans may have worked out the kink in their game.
Nosa Ebomwonyi, Romond Jenkins and Anthony Davis all contributed in a 9-4 run that cut Angelo's lead down to only two, 41-39 with nearly 17 minutes of play remaining.
Over the next seven minutes, the Rams were the team dictating play.
First team All-LSC guard Quay King scored five straight points for the Rams in what ended up being a 16-10 extending Angelo's lead back to eight, 57-49 with 10 minutes remaining.
Shortly after the mid-way point in the period, the Texans found themselves trailing by 12, 63-51 following a three-point shot from King. Anthony Davis was then fouled for Tarleton hitting both free throws and starting a 12-2 run, including three pointers from Sawyer Kipp and Chantz Chambers, to make it a one-possession game, 65-63 Angelo State with only 4:49 left to play.
The scoring was back and forth over the remaining several minutes, but the Rams found themselves with a chance to win the game with 13 seconds remaining. Quay King took the honors of firing the last shot in regulation from very long distance, but it bounced in-and-out sending the two teams in overtime tied at 73.
Tarleton grabbed the first lead in the extra period following a Deshawn Riddick free throw. Moments later after two Angelo free throws, Chantz Chambers hit a three pointer sending the Texans back on top, 77-75 with more than four minutes to go in overtime.
Angelo responded in a big way by answering the call with a 7-0 run putting Tarleton into a five-point hole with with 2:38 remaining. Nosa Ebomwonyi and Chantz Chambers once again put the Texans back into contention scoring five straight points to tie things up. However, an easy layup on the other end for Angelo on the ensuing possession ultimately ended up being the game winning shot as the Rams knocked Tarleton out of the tournament for the second consecutive season.
"Both teams were playing very hard and are very talented. I expected a game like this from Angelo State," said Tarleton head coach Lonn Reisman afterwards. "We were our own worst enemies today. A lot of uncharacteristic errors and went you're playing a game as tight as that you have to be sure you're making good decisions and we didn't today."
Romond Jenkins led the effort for Tarleton with 23 points and 14 rebounds. Anthony Davis also recorded a double-double with 10 points and 13 rebounds. Also scoring in double-figures was Chantz Chambers (18) and Nosa Ebomwonyi (10).
The Texans were ranked No. 4 in the regional rankings this week and will need to finish in the top eight to play in the South Central Regional tournament.