SAGU hosts LSUS tonight
Lions, Pilots meet in big showdown
Coaches vs. Cancer event highlights both games
WAXAHACHIE, Texas -- There is a lot more at stake than hoops this evening at the Sheaffer Center. Southwestern Assemblies of God University will be hosting Lousiana State University at Shreveport in both women's and men's college basketball.
The entire evening will spotlight the fight against cancer as part of a national awareness and effort to raise funds to support the American Cancer Society's research and their service to victims of the disease.
The National Association of Basketball Coaches have raised nearly $45 million since 1993. This collaborative effort will be addressed at intermission of both games tonight as SAGU head coaches Arlon Beadles and Donnie Bostwick address the crowd about their personal experiences with cancer. Coaches cross the country are donning sneakers instead of their usual attire, symbollic of the fight to win this battle.
At 5:30pm the women's game will feature LSUS, 20-6, and SAGU's Lady Lions, 9-17. The Lady Pilots are contending for the regular season championship. They are knotted with Langston University, 24-2, atop the Red River Athletic Conference with 18-2 league marks.
Southwestern, with a 7-13 conference record, are looking to secure a spot in the RRAC tournament. They are currently one-half game ahead of Bacone College (10-16, 7-14 in RRAC) for the final spot in the tourney.
After tonight's clash, Team Lioness has three games remaining, two of them at home. SAGU is 1-3 in this series. They sank on the river last month, 63-37. The teams split a year ago, the home teams winning.
The 7:30pm game pits two teams who are ranked nationally in this week's NAIA Top 25 Coaches Poll.
#19 LSU-Shreveport is the hottest team in the conference. They enter this evening's tilt cresting on the wave of an 11-game winning streak. Ironic number. They own a mastery over SAGU, having taken all 11-games in the series, including all six in Waxahachie. They won, 83-69, in a January meeting.
The River Pilots are 19-6 in all games and 17-3 against Red River foes. With two weekends remaining in the regular season, they trail #7 Our Lady of the Lake University (21-6, 18-3 in RRAC) by a half-game. They split with the Halos this season.
They lead Texas Wesleyan University (20-5, 15-4) by 1.5 games, following a split with the Rams. LSUS, OLLU and TWU are ranked in the Top 20, the first time in the RRAC's history that three teams simultaneously appeared that high.
LSU-Shreveport has won six straight conference tournaments, including their last five in the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference.
SAGU (19-7, 13-7) is in a three-way tie with Wiley College (17-8, 13-7) and Texas College (16-9, 12-7) for 5th. The Lions play them both next week. Southwestern could wind up in 4th or as low as 7th.
Southwestern hopes to finish strong enough to receive a bid for the 32-team NAIA tournament.
Tonight's games will be broadcast in HD by SAGU SPORTS Live. The free livestream can be accessed at www.sagu.edu by clicking on the WATCH SAGUtv button.