Dormant Lions take Bacone, 70-57
SAGU fueled by 22 offensive rebounds
Tillotson visits Sheaffer Center on Monday
WAXAHACHIE, Texas -- Struggling like a trout on a line, the men’s basketball team from Southwestern Assemblies of God University fought to escape with a 70-57 win over Bacone College on Thursday night.
After trouncing the Warriors, 100-49, a month ago in Muskogee, Oklahoma, a repeat performance was not in the offing.
The Lions pulled away from a 21-19 first half lead with 10 unanswered points and took a 40-26 lead to the locker room at halftime. An improved effort by Bacone kept them within striking distance though they never seriously threatened the rest of the way.
Southwestern went on top by twenty, 65-45, with 6:26 remaining on the clock on one of 22 offensive rebounds that proved to be more like stiff-arms to any thoughts of a Bacone comeback.
Jared Gibson (Dallas, Tx / Oral Roberts Univ, Plano West HS) fired a would-be three-ball that went three-quarters down before circling up and out. James Ford (Victoria, Tx / Faith Academy), a junior guard, darted inside from the left elbow. He leapt and caught the ball high in the lane and banked it back into the net before returning to earth.
“We are both about the same in height,” said Bacone Head Coach Alan Foster, comparing his Warriors to the Lions. “But they have an incredible desire to go after the ball on the offensive glass. That was the difference.”
Southwestern leads the 13-team RRAC by averaging 16.3 offensive rebounds per game.
Whether it was knack or desire or a combination, reeling in caroms on offense described the main factor in determining the outcome of a game that was rather listless otherwise.
In dominating the boards overall, 50-29, SAGU grabbed a lion share on the offensive end with a 22-4 margin against a Warriors team that appeared flatfooted once the ball was in the air.
“We have steadily improved from a month ago,” Foster said of his team. “We’re just not getting the W’s to show evidence of our growth at the moment.”
While Bacone held SAGU to 36% shooting while make 42% of their own attempts, the extra possessions gained by the second-chances on offense, coupled with 21 Warrior turnovers, proved too much to overcome. The Lions were able to fire 78 shots compared to 55 for the red-clad Warriors.
The Lions took advantage, owning a 28-23 edge in baskets, even though they could connect on just 4-of-23 from beyond the arc. They helped themselves by making only 11 turnovers and by draining 10-of-13 free throws. Otherwise, it was a game lacking the long balls, fast pace and above the rim action fans have grown accustomed.
First year Assistant Coach Garrett Jones said afterwards, “Kind of a snoozer, wasn’t it?”
While it may have put home fans to sleep, with many leaving early, it was a league win and improved SAGU’s overall record to 14-5 and their Red River Athletic Conference mark to 8-5. See the complete league standings below.
Southwestern had a 22-point late in the game before Bacone closed with a 12-3 run that included the final six points that gave a misleading final surplus.
Jonathan Walter (Garland, Tx / Garland HS) had the best stat-line, scoring 10 points and snatching a dozen boards. Nathaniel Duce Ward (Waco, Tx / Univ. of N.Texas, Connally HS), in making three of his four shots, was the only player on the team to make more than half of his attempts. He totaled nine points and eight rebounds.
Craig Grigsby (Houston, Tx / Glenda Dawson HS) paced SAGU with 11 points. Combined with Ward and Ronald Horne (Waco, Tx / Univ. of N.Texas, Waco HS), the trio made zero turnovers in 85 minutes of playing time.
Dominique Rambo (Dallas, Tx / Oklahoma Wesleyan, Trinity Christian School) added 10 points. He pulled the trigger on 2-of-3 triples and registered a pair of steals.
Mike Nwelue (Lewisville, Tx / Lewisville HS) led the bench to a 26-9 advantage over their Bacone counterparts. In eight minutes he racked up nine points and pulled down five boards.
Bacone’s top three scorers were guards James Scott and Lakheem Trotter, who had 17 and 13 points, and 6’7 La’Charleston Tumblin, who tossed in a dozen.
Officials were very lenient in allowing physical play and just as quiet when it came to the shrill of their whistles.
SAGU was called for only 12 fouls, Bacone just 14. The two teams average about 45 combined fouls per game, a fact not lost on fans who plead with them for more free throws.
Southwestern converted 10 of 13 from the foul line, while Bacone went six-of-ten.
SAGU head coach Donnie Bostwick played his entire 14-man bench, with everyone getting a minimum of four minutes of court time. Eleven produced points.
Tillotson on tap Monday
The Lions reappear on Monday, January 30, when they entertain winless Huston-Tillotson University in a 7:30pm tipoff.
A year ago the Rams won only four times in 31 tries, though one came at Southwestern’s expense, 92-89.
The Purple Pride took the first encounter, 86-64, on December 10.
After last night’s catnap, hopefully this rematch isn’t a replay of Thursday night.
|7||Our Lady of the Lake||13-0||1.000||16-3||.842||--||9-1||7-2||0-0||Won 14|
|11||Texas Wesleyan||10-2||.833||15-3||.833||2.5||9-0||4-3||2-0||Won 5|
|St. Thomas - Houston||10-3||.769||12-7||.632||3.0||8-2||3-3||1-2||Won 2|
|RV||SW Assemblies of God||8-5||.615||14-5||.737||5.0||8-1||4-4||2-0||Won 1|
|Texas College||8-6||.571||12-8||.600||5.5||7-2||5-6||0-0||Won 5|
|Jarvis Christian||4-9||.308||5-13||.278||9.0||3-3||2-10||0-0||Won 1|
|Paul Quinn||3-9||.250||4-14||.222||9.5||3-3||1-10||0-1||Lost 5|