Ellis County residents admitted free
Area fans, staff urged to attend critical game
WAXAHACHIE, Texas -- Tomorrow, Saturday afternoon, January 5, Southwestern Assemblies of God University will be hosting the University of St. Thomas in a college basketball doubleheader.
SAGU has also announced that all residents of Ellis County will be admitted for free with ID.
It is the third time this school year they have treated local communities to a taste of NAIA (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics) sports.
The matinee starts with a 2:00pm (CST) game between the Lady Lions (4-10) and UST (6-7). SAGU swept both meetings a year ago during the Lady Celts first-ever season.
Fellow members in the 15-member Red River Athletic Conference, the Lady Lions are 1-7 and have dropped their last five games.
St. Thomas, whose campus is located in Houston, are 3-3 after routing Northwood University on Thursday.
The men’s game between the two schools is set to tipoff at 4:00pm. Both contests will take place in the Sheaffer Center, which is located on campus at 1200 Sycamore Street.
SAGU, ranked no. 28 in the latest NAIA Coaches Poll, are 11-3 overall after beating no. 12 Texas Wesleyan University, 75-73, in their last game. The Lions are 6-2 in the RRAC, a game out of first place. The next poll is released on Tuesday.
The Celts (pronounced Kelts) are 8-3 and 4-2 in league play. Their three setbacks have been by a combined 11 points against teams who have all been ranked this season.
Last season the clubs split their two games, with home court advantage prevailing. They met in the RRAC tournament quarterfinal where the Lions pulled away for a 67-60 triumph. The series is tied, 3-3.
The teams are the top two in the Red River in defense. All scoring figures to be highly contested.
SAGU has already dropped three at home; they were 12-3 last season, all to teams ranked this year.
The Lions see this game as critically important. Both SAGU and UST are tied in third place behind Texas College (12-2, 7-1 in RRAC) and Our Lady of the Lake University (7-5, 5-1).
The Purple Pride will not play at home again for three weeks.
With the campus largely vacant due to the holidays, local fans and students and staff who are in the area, could be a huge factor in the game. The above photo (left) was taken this season.
Games to be broadcast by SAGU Sports Live
Both contests will be aired on the internet. SAGU Sports Live is the only high definition broadcast produced by any school in the NAIA. Fans can access the HD livestream on laptops and other apps at www.sagu.edu/tv
The pregame show starts approximately fifteen minutes early. Rob Price is the host and supplies the play-by-play while Tim Roberts is the color analyst. Bianca Alarcon will bring courtside interviews.
SAGU then takes to the road for their next five games. Their next home date is on Saturday, January 26, against Bacone College.
The Lions close the season with eight of their final ten games inside the friendly confines of the Sheaffer Center.
Contact: Mark “Link” Warde, SAGU Sports Information Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 469-658-2847.