Clarksville, Ark.-Howard Payne University fought off an Eagles second half rally to earn a 84-77 win Monday night in American Southwest Conference play.
Ozarks (3-3, 1-1 ASC) trailed the entire night, but an Andre Williams three-pointer got the Eagles to within 78-75 with two minutes remaining. Howard Payne (2-4, 1-1 ASC) missed on their next possession, but was able to get the rebound and later score to go ahead five points with one minute left. Williams answered again, this time drawing a foul and hitting both free throws to pull Ozarks within 80-77. But the Yellow Jackets scored back-to-back layups and the Eagles went scoreless the rest of the way.
Howard Payne shot a solid 20-of-35 (57%) from the field in the first half to hold a 48-38 lead at intermission. The Yellow Jackets improved in the second half, hitting 15-of-24 (62%) from the floor. Howard Payne controlled the first half, drilling eight three-pointers, and answering every Ozarks’ run. Marcus Bobb’s layup with 6:56 left in the half trimmed the deficit to 31-27, but Howard Payne later claimed a 46-36 advantage five minutes later.
Williams led Ozarks with 18 points, hitting 4-of-11 from three-pointer range. Bobb finished with 14 points. Jerard McGinty and Jermery Victor each had 10 points.
Ozarks will travel to Abilene, Texas, to face McMurry University December 2 and Hardin-Simmons University December 4.