Kervy Robles, Sports Editor
Oklahoma Baptist kicked off the 2016-2017 season last Friday against its archenemy Saint Gregory’s University.
“[OBU] did scouting on their key players,” junior Timotis Kuckailis said.
“Also we all were aware of the fact that it is OBU’s biggest rival, so my team- mates were extra hyped for that.”
For the beginning of the game, head coach Quinn Wooldridge assigned spe- cific duties to its team.
“The strategy was come back on defense quick, play solid one–on-one defense and take care of defensive re- bounds,” Kuckailis said.
The Bison had an aggressive start and dominated its opponent throughout the first half.
Steven Green and his 13 points and 12 rebounds sent OBU to a halftime with a 41-32 score.
For the second period, St. Gregory’s showed a different attitude in attack and upset OBU’s strategy.
“We did not communicate very well in defense,” Kevin Franceschi said. “They took advantage of this situation and made runs in transition that cut our initiative quickly.”
The Bison led the score with 67-66 with three minutes left to play in the match.
The visitors overcame and registered 23 of 29 throws in the game.
With a fevered end, St. Gregory’s earned a triumph by 74-71 over the Bison.
Franceschi scored 15 points, while Chabdler Rickey added 14 points and blocked three shots.
Despite a tough loss against the arch rival, OBU showed some strengths to consider.
“We moved the ball really well in the first half which gave us open looks,” Rickey said.
“The movement in attack and passing the ball is a strength we have,” he said.
Men’s basketball will move on and leave this game in the past.
“Unlike last year we are going to have a great depth in the roster; we re- turn all but three of our guys from last year,” Rickey said.
“However, we all know how to handle adversity and will have no problem bouncing back after a tough loss.”
The Bison is ready to fix mistakes.
“We will continue to grow as a team and figure out how to play as a team, as well as being relentless in defense,” Franceschi said.
“We will become a strong team by the end of the season,”
Oklahoma Baptist will make its first appearance in the Great American Conference contest against Ouachita Baptist University Thursday 7:30 p.m. in Arkadelphia, AR.