Take 5 with Coach Bostwick
Lions prepare for road trip
WAXAHACHIE, Texas -- The men’s basketball team from Southwestern Assemblies of God University are heading to CapCity and the Alamo City this weekend for a pair of road games.
The Lions take on Huston-Tillotson University in Austin on Saturday night, December 10 before staying in San Antonio to face Our Lady of the Lake University on Monday.
Both contests are slated for 7:30pm and are league games in the Red River Athletic Conference.
SAGU, now 8-0 overall and 2-0 in the RRAC, will make the 170-mile trek to play the HTU Rams, who are 0-6 and 0-4. Eighty-miles further south the no. 24 ranked OLLU Saints, 6-3, 3-0, await.
Prior to hitting the road, head coach Donnie Bostwick responded to this week’s Take 5 set of questions, as well as the Bonus Question.
Q1) How healthy is the team heading into this two-game road trip?
DB: We have the normal bumps and bruises. Overall, though, we are pretty healthy.
Q2) What can you tell us about Huston-Tillotson?
DB: HT has size and quickness. They start two 6-8's and a 6-7. Their leading scorer is a very quick point-guard in Charles Jones. He can really get it going (17ppg, 16 threes, high of 26) if allowed. They have played some good teams pretty close (setbacks of 5 and 8-pts this week). We need to play our game, especially defensively.
Q3) No. 24 Our Lady of the Lake leads the nation in points per game. What will be the challenges of trying to slow them down?
DB: We have to focus on what we do instead of how many points they score. They can flat out score a lot. We must execute our press break (OLLU often applies fullcourt pressure the entire game), handle their double-teams and ball pressure, while pushing the ball and look for easy baskets when possible.
Hopefully, we can make them score against our “team” defense as much as possible. I really don't care if the score is 52-50 or 152-150, the goal is to keep a handle on the game and to finish strong. It will be a good challenge and I want the guys to enjoy it.
Q4) If such stats were kept, which players would lead the team in hustle plays?
DB: That is an interesting question. Taking a charge here and making a dive there stick out in my mind during these first 8 games.
I think every player on our team, whether it be in games or in practice, has taken a big step forward when it comes to effort.
Early on we were not shooting the ball well and it was our effort that was winning games. Of late, we have done both.
Duce (Ward) sets the tone for us when it comes to high energy. He struggle fighting with fatigue as a result, but I will go to war with him any day of the week. Our other returnees are buying in and giving me all they have in this area as well.
Our freshmen have grown up so much already. They bring so much energy and excitement. All I ask is that they play fearlessly and don't worry about mistakes. Just learn from them and don't make the same mistake twice.
(Dominique) Rambo also sets the pace as he should. It’s his second season with me and he has familiarity with our system. He knows that he has a lot of room for improvement as well.
It is fun coaching a group of young men that have character, Christ, and a desire to play as a team.
Q5) The Lions are not the tallest team in the RRAC, yet they lead the league in getting offensive rebounds (16 per game). How important is that and which players are doing it well?
DB: That is one of our selling cards to go along with running off our team defense and 3pt shooting. Often quickness and effort can beat size. We use both and attempt to outwork our opponents.
Early on we were missing so many shots that there were a lot of offensive rebounds to be had. We attempt to get 43% of our misses. One thing about offensive rebounding, you can't get an OR (offensive rebound) if you don't go hard to the glass.
It is a difficult discipline to conquer. Our bench helps keep us fresh and helps us excel in this as well.
BONUS Q: So far this season, who are the funniest or most colorful players in purple and gold?
DB: Each guy on the team has a side that we laugh or have fun poking at. Our goal is to be like a family, so no one is off limits, including myself when it comes to having a little fun. James (Ford) and Christian (Wood-Dvorak) are always good for a smile. But we all have a little fun!