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Southland Conference Notebook

December 4, 2003 Conference Notes No Comments

Southland Conference Notebook

by Adam Shandler

Lamar: Terrell Petteway is lighting it up for the Cardinals. Problem is, his efforts may be sneezed upon by the hoops elite. Petteway opened the season with both a 23 and 10 double-double and a 30 point outing. Those stellar performances, however, came against small schools LeTourneau and Hardin Simmons, respectively…Billy Tubbs’s team smote North Texas, 88-72, in its first D-I game of the season on November 29. Junior Gil Goodrich led the Cards with 21. With that victory, coach Tubbs is now just two away from 600.

Louisiana-Monroe: The Indians opened up the season slow out of the gate, but give them credit; they had to tussle with the likes of LSU, Miami, FL, and Rhode Island — teams from conferences with higher RPIs. But Mike Vining’s team got a much needed reprieve. On November 30 ULM finally notched its first W on the year with an 83-53 trouncing of Central Methodist College. The Indians held CMC to 8-of-31 shooting and hit for 52% themselves. Tank Thompson finished the home opener with 12 points, 10 boards and Mark Keith had 18 points on 7-of-10 shooting…It’s back into the fire for ULM. They challenge Mississippi State in Starkville on Dec. 3.

McNeese State: The Cowboy campus is still commiserating over their humbling 35-3 defeat at the hands of Northern Arizona in the I-AA football playoffs. Ranked No. 1 in the nation with a 10-1 record going into the game, hopes were sorely dashed Thanksgiving weekend. Now McNeese sports fans can look to a basketball team that is 3-2 and which put up a good fight against LSU, 77-87. Most recently, Tic Price’s boys fell to Mississippi State, despite seven three-pointers and 23 points from Edward Garriet…The Centenary Gents are next for MSU, a Dec. 6 matchup in Shreveport, LA.

Nicholls State: After getting thumped by Florida State and Arkansas to open the season, the Colonels dialed it down and got much needed confidence-boosters against Wiley College (96-59) and Dillard (79-68). NSU does not play another game until December 10, when they face Southern at home…The Colonels are led in points and rebounds (15.0 and 6.5) by Jason Wilkins. Wilkins had 21 points, eight rebounds against Arkansas and 19 points in the loss to the Seminoles.

Northwestern State: This past Thanksgiving weekend, the Spirit of Giving was the theme for the Demons. In more ways than one. While in Chicago to face namesake Northwestern, Mike McConathy’s team united with two Aurora, Ill., churches to feed the needy. Shortly after on the 29th, the Demons fed the Wildcats a 69-61 victory. NSU did a nice job defensively on Northwestern’s leading scorer Jitim Young (9 points, 0 rebounds, 0 assists) but four other purple players hit for double-digits. All-Southland forward Jermaine Wallace scored 15 for the Demons, while the other Jermaine – Spencer – had13 points and brought down 9 boards…NSU got even more generous with Centenary as the Gents took a 44-21 halftime lead and turned it into a 90-67 triumph. The 1-4 Demons got 14 from Wallace; the next highest scorers were Jermaine Hancock and Demetrius Bell with 8 each.

Sam Houston State: The Bearkats are already building for next year. Bob Marlin just signed local high school forward Ryan Bright from Deer Park. The 6-6, 200 lb. big man averaged 17.9 ppg and 10.4 rpg as a junior and was named his district’s MVP…The Kats have beat up on some lower-division squads so far (Jarvis Christian, 74-60, and Central Arkansas, 68-57) but their pride got whacked by a two-by-four in the form of the Texas Longhorns (122-71). Sam Houston has some games they can win coming up, namely against Texas-Corpus Christi, Arkansas State and Texas-Pan American. Then it’s another Lone Star juggernaut: Bobby Knight’s Red Raiders on December 17…Auguste Wilder is SHSU’s points leader with just over 11 a game.

Southeastern Louisiana: The 2-2 Lions showed Bellhaven what D-I is all about by handing the Blazers an 83-67 drubbing on Dec. 2. Guess SELA was still charged up after giving Ole Miss a scare on Nov. 29 and posting a valiant effort against Alabama on the 25th. Against Mississippi, the Lions came down from 31-14 at the half to outscore the Rebels 34-21 in the second stanza. A fast-paced 11-4 run made this one interesting, but down the stretch clutch shooting by Ole Miss’s Justin Reed – both from the floor and the line – put the game just slightly out of reach, and SELA went home with a 52-48 loss. Lions Center Nate Lofton posted a 14-11 double-dandy, the first of two on the year…Against Alabama, it was again a game of second-half catch-up. With the Tide up 38-31 at the break, SELA went bucket for bucket with ‘Bama but came up short, 83-76. All-Southland forward Amir Abdur-Rahim had a season best 17 to lead the Lions. Earnest Shelton scored 28 for the Crimson Tide.

Stephen F. Austin: The Jacks are 3-0 and looking like the hungriest team in the Southland field. SFA rolled over Alcorn State, 80-63, and embattled Baylor, 79-57, and opened with a hurtin’ of Houston Baptists 98-83. Senior forward Antonio Burks has been a man possessed. He’s put up big numbers, 20, 28, and 17 and his rebounding, at 6-per-game, ain’t half bad either. Thus far, Burks is the runaway favorite for postseason player of the year, but TCU is up next for the Lumberjacks.

Texas-Arlington: The Mavs wasted no time in the early signing period, recruiting two of the most highly touted prep players in all of Texas. Myles Guidry, a 6-4 forward who is regarded as one of the 300 best high school seniors, averaged 12.5 points and eight boards last year. He led Elsik High School to a 29-6 record and was named to the Adidas Big Time AAU All-Tournament team in Las Vegas. Guidry will be joined by Houston Milbry’s Larry Posey, a 6-5 forward and two-time all-district selection. Posey, who put up 15.8 ppg, 9.7 rpg and 2.1 bpg, is also listed as one of the top 50 prep players in the Lone Star State…The 0-2 Mavericks had a chance to redeem themselves greatly against New Mexico State on Nov. 24, but the Aggies pooled together a 21-5 run in the second half to record a 72-62 W. The game featured 10 lead changes over a 7:16 span. UT-A got their first victory on November 29, an 81-75 squeaker over Texas-Pan American. Steven Thomas poured in 23 in the Mavs’ unconvincing showing…Texas-Arlington doesn’t face another D-I opponent until Dec. 22 when the Mavs visit Wichita State.

Texas-San Antonio: If the Roadrunners’ season-opening loss to Alaska-Fairbanks is any omen for the rest of the season, then it’s going to be a long year in San Antone. 1-3 UTSA notched their lone victory against VMI in the consolation bracket of the Top of the World Classic, then regressed against Idaho State and Illinois-Chicago. Raphael Posey scored 16 against the Flames in the home opener…On Dec. 3, things get even dicier as the Roadrunners travel to Stillwater to face an Oklahoma State team that wants in on the Hoopville Top 25…All-Southland pick LeRoy Hurd leads his team with averages of 13.5 points and 6 rebounds.

Texas State: The Bobcats join a troubled fleet of Southland teams with their 1-4 mark. The troubles began with a 77-64 loss to New Orleans, then TSU took their problems out on Texas-Lutheran, 73-39. After the temporary glee, the Cats traveled up – way up – to Anchorage and posted three straight losses to Purdue, Alaska-Anchorage and Pacific in the Great Alaska Shootout. Texas State now prepares for the Southwest Missouri State Tournament (Dec. 5-6) where it draws Weber State in round one and will face either the host Bears or Coppin State in the next wave.


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