CORSICANA — Region XIV Conference road wins are hard to come by. But, at least for now, the Trinity Valley Community College Cardinals are getting by just fine, thank you.

The Cardinals posted their second straight league win on foreign soil Wednesday night, turning back the Navarro College Bulldogs for a 98-89 decision at the Wolens Center in front of a crowd of around 400.

TVCC upped its season record to 9-5 and improved to 4-2 in the conference. The Cardinals, 2-1 in conference road games, are tied for third with Tyler and one game back of Paris and San Jacinto.

Navarro saw its records slip to 8-6 and 3-3.

Aside from a brief stretch midway through the first half, first-year coach Pat Smith’s Cardinals were in control. TVCC set the tempo with intense defensive pressure and a hot shooting start. The Cardinals hit five of their first seven shots to race out to a 16-8 lead.

No one was hotter early on than sophomore Kennith Gober. Gober, who led all scorers with 19 points, knocked down 12 points early in the first half, including a pair of three-pointers, to put TVCC in command of the scoreboard.

Navarro, which struggled holding onto the ball in the opening minutes and wasn’t able to connect from the outside, used the inside presence of Warrell Span to mount a comeback. A second Span putback at the 8:45 mark of the first half gave the Bulldogs their only lead of the game, 25-24.

The Cardinals reclaimed the lead for the duration on a Ricardo Lovelace shot off a rebound, going on to outscore the Bulldogs 22-13 the rest of the half.

TVCC hit 18 of 29 shots in the first half and were up 46-38 at halftime.

Navarro’s Jamaal Flowers tossed in seven points early in the second half to get the Bulldogs within striking distance after Lovelace and Gober had combined to stretch the TVCC lead to as much as 13. A Lance McGuire jumper with 13:57 left in the game had Navarro within three, 56-53.

But the Bulldogs couldn’t get any close, thanks in no small measure to the play of Dannon Wafer inside for the Cardinals. Wafer, who spent several minutes on the bench with four fouls midway through the half, was a factor when on the floor, scoring seven points by the 10:31 mark and hitting a pair of key shots down the stretch.

TVCC guard Cavel Witter, scoreless in the first half and for almost 14 minutes of the second, was responsible for the play that seemingly broke the Bulldogs’ spirits. With just over six minutes to go, he scored on a layup for his first points and drew a foul. When completed the three-point play, TVCC was up 78-70. He followed with a pair of free throws on the Cardinals’ next possession for an 80-70 advantage.

Lovelace hit a shot off a rebound with 3:59 remaining to give the Cardinals a 13-point lead, 86-73, and move them out of harm’s way.

Wafer finished with 15 points to back up Gober’s 19. Jonathon Clark had 14, Jumaria Johnson 12 and Lovelace 11.

Dykes was Navarro’s top gun, hitting 17 points. Flowers had 12, Josh Bonney 11 and Charleston Flemming, Jamaal McCoy and McGuire 10 each.

Navarro was 4 of 22 from three-point range. TVCC was 7 of 18.

The Bulldogs hit 22 of 32 free throws and the Cardinals were 19 of 23.

For the game, TVCC 36 of 62 from the floor.

The Cardinals are scheduled to be at home Saturday against Panola (10-4, 2-4). Game time is 4 p.m. after a 2 p.m. women’s game.


TVCC (98) — Cavel Witter 7; Kennith Gober 19; Jonathan Clark 14; Ricardo Lovelace 11; Dannon Wafer 15; Jay Smith 8; Marlin Cloudy 10; Jumaria Johnson 12; Roger Munoz 2

NAVARRO (89) — Matt Miller 3; Kyndall Dykes 17; Warrell Span 8; Lance McGuire 10; Jamar Flowers 12; Charleston Flemming 10; Matt Addison 2; DeAndre Mays 4; Jamaal McCoy 10; Chris Roberts 2; Josh Bonney 11

Halftime Score: TVCC 46, Navarro 38

Three-Pointers: TVCC 7-18 — Gober (3), Smith (2), Clark, Lovelace. Navarro 4-22 — McCoy (2), Flowers, Flemming

Turnovers: TVCC 15. Navarro 18

Free Throws: TVCC 19-23 (Clark 7-8). Navarro 22-32 (Dykes 7-11)

Team Fouls: TVCC 25. Navarro 23

Fouled Out: TVCC 1 (Johnson). Navarro-none

Technical Fouls: TVCC-none. Navarro-none

Records: TVCC 9-5, 4-2. Navarro 8-6, 3-3

Estimated Attendance: 400

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