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Bulldogs' quest for fifth SCAC Championship in six years comes up short against Centenary

Caleb Lister, left, and Cameron Fontenot
Caleb Lister, left, and Cameron Fontenot
KERRVILLE, Texas -- Texas Lutheran's quest for a fifth Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference Championship in six seasons fell short Sunday in a 77-56 loss to the Centenary Gents.
Centenary, the top seed, won its first SCAC Championship in men's basketball and earned the automatic berth into the NCAA Division III Men's Basketball Championship.
The Gents improved to 18-9 overall and won two of the three meetings this year against TLU.
The Bulldogs' season is over with an overall record of 16-12.
TLU, the No. 3 seed in the SCAC tournament, advanced to the conference title game for the fifth time in six seasons. The Bulldogs won a quarterfinal matchup Friday with No. 6 seed Southwestern and upset No. 2 seed Austin College in the Saturday semifinal.
TLU previously won SCAC Championships and made NCAA Tournament appearances in 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2019.
Sunday's loss was the Bulldogs' first setback in an SCAC Men's Basketball Championship final.
The Gents shot a blazing 58.3 percent in the second half and held TLU to 31.8 percent shooting for the game.
Centenary made 50.9 percent of their total shots. The Gents led 37-24 at the half.
Ralph Johnson led the Gents with 17 points. He added seven rebounds and four assists. Johnson made seven of his nine total shots.
SCAC Tournament MVP Cedric Harris added 16 points and 10 rebounds, and Tykeem Singleton and Ty Prince each scored 13. Singleton hit six of his eight shots, and Prince was 6-for-9.
Caleb Lister, TLU's junior forward, led the Bulldogs with 19 points and 14 rebounds. Lister had eight offensive rebounds.
Sebastian Andrade, Jamir Mason, and Jorden Kite each scored 11 for the Bulldogs. Kite made three three-pointers. Mason added 11 rebounds and six assists.
TLU was 6-for-31 from the three-point line.
Andrade and Lister were named to the SCAC All-Tournament Team.
Kite, the lone Bulldog senior, played in his final collegiate contest. A transfer this season from the University of the Incarnate Word, Kite scored 349 points and made 74 three-pointers this year. He made 90.5 percent of his free throw attempts.